Worth Visiting

Electronic: From Kraftwerk to The Chemical Brothers at the London Design Museum

July 31, 2020 – February 14, 2021 at the London Design Museum

The Design Museum in London reopens on Friday 31 July2020 with new exhibition exploring the hypnotic world of electronic music, from its origins to its futuristic dreams

Discover how design, technology and innovation powered the genre in the work of visionaries including Kraftwerk, The Chemical Brothers, Jeff Mills, Daphne Oram, Jean-Michel Jarre, Kevin Saunderson, Juan Atkins, Frankie Knuckles, Suzanne Ciani, Bjork and Aphex Twin

Experience the museum premiere of The Chemical Brothers’ sensory spectacle by creative studio Smith & Lyall featuring mesmerising visuals for the Grammy award-winning track ‘Got to Keep On’

New ‘Safe and Sound’ safety procedures will be in place, including reduced capacity, mandatory face coverings, social distancing, enhanced cleaning and more. The new exhibition will now provide a platform to highlight and profile a genre under threat 

This exhibition makes connections between electronic music and contemporary design, fashion and art. Including works from artists Andreas Gursky, Christian Marclay and Jeremy Deller; graphic designers Peter Saville and the Designers Republic and fashion designer, Charles Jeffrey for Loverboy

Grab your headphones and plug into the first music-themed exhibition at the Design Museum, from Friday 31 July 2020 – featuring a club-like environment where lighting and video are synched to a specially curated soundtrack by French DJ Laurent Garnier and a mesmerising CORE light installation by 1024 architecture.

Complete with a new series of live AV experiences, visitors will be transported by multi-sensory installations. This is your chance to step inside the visual world of The Chemical Brothers legendary live show as film and lights interact to create a three-dimensional immersive experience by Smith & Lyall (@smithandlyall) – inspired by the electronic duo’s acclaimed ’No Geography’ Tour. Delve into the extreme visual world created by Weirdcore for Aphex Twin’s ‘Collapse’ and celebrate 50 years of legendary group Kraftwerk with their 3D experience.

An adaptation of the hugely popular exhibition from Musée de la Musique – Philharmonie de Paris, the London showcase will put a spotlight on UK electronic and rave culture. Featuring over 400 items, the exhibition is divided into four sections: Man and Woman Machine, Dancefloor, Mix and Remix, and Utopian Dreams and Ideals. The journey begins with a timeline of revolutionary instruments and the innovators who pioneered them, including Nikolai Obukhov’s Croix Sonore, synths from the Roland Corporation including the iconic TB-303 and Shiva Feshareki’s exploration into Daphne Oram’s work for the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. As well as an ‘imagined’ music studio from electronic music innovator Jean-Michel Jarre.

Travel to warehouses and dancefloors across the world in celebration of rave and club culture. Explore designs behind Tomato and Underworld, objects from the iconic Haçienda club and turn back time with large-scale images of rave culture by Andreas Gursky. Expect to see clothing by Charles Jeffrey of Loverboy, projections of dancers from all corners of the globe including New York, Paris, Rio de Janeiro, and Moscow and relive the moment of ecstasy experienced by many on the dance floor. 

Gemma Curtin, Curator said:  “This exhibition, planned before any knowledge of Covid 19, celebrates the cultural impact of electronic dance music since the first experiments to create music from electricity. A music that became the soundtrack of people who resist and defy authority. It is painful, then, that a pandemic has forced the complete closure of London’s rich and varied music scene and financial hardship faces the music community for the unforeseen future. With the need for music appreciated as never before, in these challenging times we are delighted to be able to host an exhibition exploring this genre. London will not stop dancing.”

The Chemical Brothers said: “Design is an essential element enhancing the experience of our live show. This new installation will give insight into how we work with Adam & Marcus (Smith & Lyall) on the visual aspect of our tours.”

Smith & Lyall, Show Directors and Designers for The Chemical Brothers said: “We are thrilled that Electronic at the Design Museum will be opening soon. Feels important in these times to celebrate the transformative power of music, art and design. Sharing this experience (safely) will, we hope, bring some welcome joy to anyone who visits.

Our aim for the Chemical Brothers live show has always been to create a visual expression of the music and give the audience a visceral experience. We are excited to translate this to a Museum setting for the first time.”

From icons on your streaming service to covers of cherished vinyl records, cover art is seen as an extension of the artist and their genre. The exhibition looks at how Christian Marclay and Peter Saville responded visually to the music, fusing together fine art, film and sound. See how club posters such as the recent campaign that saved Fabric, alongside Cream by Mark Farrow, Warehouse Project by Studio Moross and the Gatecrashers by The Designers Republic, used graphic design to tell their story. 

Explore how clubbing communities have fought laws intended to halt rave culture and the expressions of resistance that have empowered minority groups. From the removal of the Berlin Wall and Berlin’s transition into a new haven for club and rave culture, to collective groups No Shade, Discwomen and female:pressue, cultural movements are at the heart of defending club culture. Also appearing in the Utopian Dreams and Ideals section is ‘A History of the World’ by Jeremy Deller, mask designs for Squarepusher and Aphex Twin, demonstrating how electronic music has created globally recognised icons. 

To celebrate the launch of the exhibition, The Chemical Brothers have announced the release of a limited edition pink vinyl 12 inch of Grammy winning single ‘Got To Keep On’. This limited collector’s edition features an extended version of The Chemical Brothers’ live favourite plus the classic Midland remix, available here on vinyl for first time. 

Electronic is an exhibition by the Musée de la Musique – Philharmonie de Paris

Curated by 

Jean-Yves Leloup

Design Museum Curatorial Team

Gemma Curtin, Curator

Maria McLintock, Assistant Curator

Exhibition 3D Design

Original concept and exhibition design by 1024 Architecture

London edition designed in collaboration with All Things Studio

Exhibition 2D Design

Agnès Dahan Studio


Open Monday-Sunday 10.00 – 21.00. 

Adult £16.00 (weekdays) / £18 (Saturday & Sunday)

Child (6 – 15 years) £8.00 / £9 (Saturday & Sunday) Student/concession* £12.00 (weekdays) / £13.50 (Saturday & Sunday) Family (1 adult + 3 children) £24.00 (weekdays) / £29.30 (Saturday & Sunday)

Family (2 adults + 3 children) £36.00 (weekdays) / £41 (Saturday & Sunday)

Art Fund Members (membership cards will be checked at the door) £8 (weekdays) / £9 (Saturday & Sunday)

Children under 6 years free

Members go free

*Concession tickets include NHS workers, seniors (over 60 years), the disabled and companion and job seekers

Updated tickets exchange and refund policy: Refund guarantee in case of cancellation and exchange or refund options available if visitors feel unwell and would like to attend on another date. 

Ticket Mate Fund 

In partnership with the ClementJames Centre, IntoUniversity Crisis, and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea the Design Museum has launched a new Ticket Mate Fund.

The pay it forward scheme is aimed at supporting the immediate future of the museum while offering free access to its temporary exhibitions to young people and adults in the local community for whom price might be a barrier to participation, including those most affected by the Coronavirus crisis. All ticket buyers and the general public will have the opportunity to contribute to the fund by adding an additional voluntary donation to their purchases. 

Safe and Sound Guidelines   

Safe and Sound Guidelines  

The Chemical Brothers Got To Keep On Single

The Chemical Brothers announce limited edition pink vinyl 12 inch of Grammy winning single ‘Got To Keep On’ to celebrate the launch of The Design Museum exhibition: Electronic: From Kraftwerk To The Chemical Brothers. This limited collector’s edition features an extended version of The Chemical Brothers’ live favourite plus the classic Midland remix, available here on vinyl for first time. 

Since its release as a single from their double Grammy winning album No Geography in February 2019, Got To Keep On has cemented itself as a pivotal moment in the band’s live set, partly due to the striking visuals associated with it. It has been used as the soundbed for the BBC’s Glastonbury coverage for two successive years.

Available from the Design Museum Shop here.

The Design Museum is the world’s leading museum devoted to contemporary architecture and design. Its work encompasses all elements of design, including fashion, product and graphic design. Since it opened its doors in 1989 the museum has displayed everything from an AK-47 to high heels designed by Christian Louboutin. It has staged over 100 exhibitions, welcomed over seven million visitors and showcased the work of some of the world’s most celebrated designers and architects including Paul Smith, Zaha Hadid, Jonathan Ive, Frank Gehry, Eileen Gray and Dieter Rams. On 24 November 2016, The Design Museum relocated to Kensington, west London. Leading architect John Pawson has converted the interior of a 1960s modernist building to create a new home for the Design Museum giving it three times more space in which to show a wider range of exhibitions and significantly extend its learning programme.

The Design Museum’s relocation to Kensington was made possible through the generosity of major donors, trusts and foundations, statutory bodies and corporate partners as well as donations from many individual donors and supporters, including all Design Museum Trustees.