Victorians and Modernists

Playing with the Gap:

Geometry and Colour across the Victorian-Modernist Divide

Play constitutes a domain which arguably reflects in miniature form the values, aspirations and fears of a given society; construction sets are toys inspired specifically by the architectural and engineering environment. A large variety of such toys was developed and widely used in Europe during the Victorian and Modernist periods; they were expressing both the rising importance of childhood as well as the preoccupation with mechanisation and technology, which fascinated and overwhelmed the respective societies. Examples of construction toys will be used as a starting point in order to explore the idea of a Victorian-Modernist divide.

This is the summary of the paper I presented during the conference Transitions: Bridging the Victorian-Modernist Divide, held on the 9th and 10th of April 2018 at the University of Birmingham.