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  • Writer's pictureAnya Naumovic

The Museum of Brands Review

The Museum of Brands located in Notting-hill serves as an exhibit to consumerism. Starting back in the Victorian era, the collection goes through the decades depicting the change in products available to buy, and thus the trends that the everyday citizen would encounter. The museum is an overwhelming display of categorised products, that show the change in branding away from the more artisan and art-based products of the Victorians, to the clean and in contrast more minimal branding of the current product available to buy. One extreme change of note in branding was that of chocolate. The Victorian display, of chocolate boxes, showed the available products at the time to be of the most upper class, with the chocolate packaging being ornately painted with renaissance imagery and in a variety of shapes normally associated with a lavish jewellery box or similar. The drastic change was depicted through the decades, with individual bars becoming more of a trend and the diminishing presence of the artsy chocolate box. Another curious element of the museum was being able to note the increase in price during the periods, going from a few pence for some items in the earlier Edwardian times all the way up until the 1960s when the prices seemed to multiply, yet the sizes seemingly decreased in value. The museum itself was dimly lit, in order to preserve the packaging and crammed so tightly together it was if you were to look inside the time appropriate cupboard. With the displays of some items such as cigarettes being maintained in their original selling positions. Up until about the 1980s when advertisement seemed to evaporate, as the hazards they brought upon the individual's health came to fruition. The gallery, however, didn’t seem to remove some of the more racially discriminative products that were around, having it seems no intuition into what is now deemed derogatory, but seemed to bypass it completely rather than acknowledge its damage it would have had and still has on racial minorities. Overall the gallery was an interesting look into the product and the artwork that we see daily but may not notice or acknowledge, and its origins of a more art-based beginning.

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