Extinction Rebellion banners and placards earn place in social history at the V&A Museum

Environment protesters by Extinction Rebellion in April 2019. Picture: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty

Environment protesters by Extinction Rebellion in April 2019. Picture: Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP/Getty Images - Credit: AFP/Getty Images

Protest banners for the Extinction Rebellion movement with templates to make your own slogans have been acquired by the V&A which is putting them on display at its Childhood Museum in Bethnal Green next month.

Child's hi-vis protest jacket worn at street demo in Dalston. Picture: Terry Matthews

Child's hi-vis protest jacket worn at street demo in Dalston. Picture: Terry Matthews - Credit: Terry Matthews

The collection even includes a child's high-vis jacket worn by a youngster at one peaceful protest street party in Dalston.

But some of the acquisitions and loans went display today, Friday, July 26 at the V&A in South Kensington. They include the "extinction" symbol created by east London street artist ESP in 2011 and adopted last year.

"The strong graphic impact of their symbol has made their 'acts of rebellion' immediately recognisable," the museum's design curator Corinna Gardner explained.

Symbolic banners acquired by V&A for exhibition at Bethnal Green's Childhood Museum. Picture: Chris

Symbolic banners acquired by V&A for exhibition at Bethnal Green's Childhood Museum. Picture: Chris Ratcliffe/Getty Images. - Credit: Chris J Ratcliffe

"Their design approach relates to earlier protest movements such as the Suffragettes 100 years ago who encouraged wearing purple, green and white to communicate their cause."


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The suffragette movement had its roots in the East End when Sylvia Pankhurst set up her Women's Federation headquarters in Old Ford Road, just walking distance from today's V&A Childhood Museum.

The exhibition moves to the museum in Cambridge Heath Road on August 9 and runs until February.

Templated slogans acquired by the V&A are now part of London's social history. Picture: Chris Ratcli

Templated slogans acquired by the V&A are now part of London's social history. Picture: Chris Ratcliffe/Getty Images - Credit: Chris Ratcliffe/Getty Images

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It includes the high-vis jacket worn at the Dalston protest in April as well as printing blocks and the "extinction" symbol made of machine-cut ply which was used when protesters made their own flags, posters and banners.

Extinction Rebellion action on climate change has grown into an international movement in 59 countries since its first public action last October calling on the UK government to reduce emissions to zero by 2025.

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