Visit the free “BA2119 – Flight of the Future” exhibition at Saatchi Gallery

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As part of its 100th birthday celebrations, British Airways is running a special event in August at the Saatchi Gallery in London.

To quote:

What will aviation look like in 20 years, 40 years, 60 years and beyond?

Through in-depth research, and in partnership with the Royal College of Art and world-leading virtual realists, British Airways presents BA 2119: Flight of the Future. An exhibition at Saatchi Gallery which seeks to push the boundaries of imagination and explore how future generations will circumnavigate the globe in a world of advanced jet propulsion, hyper personalisation, automation, AI, modular transport, sustainability, health and entertainment. We hope you enjoy it. 

The exhibition itself is free.  However, for £20, you can take part in a virtual reality experience:

Immerse yourself in the evolution of flight through a first-of-its-kind interactive, multisensory virtual reality experience that traces humankind’s relationship with flight.

Built by multiple award-winning VR creators and an Oscar-winning practical effects team, Fly turns you into a time-travelling pilot, from the earliest imaginings of Leonard da Vinci and his ornithopter, to the Wright Brothers’ first successful attempt at Kitty Beach, to British Airways’ predecessor, Air Transport and Travel’s inaugural flight to Paris. Travel on Concorde before jumping to today’s A350 and onwards to a possible vision of the future of aviation.

The VR experience lasts for 8 minutes and must be prebooked here.  When you look at the small print it begins to sound more interesting:

“Ticket holders will be participating in a multi-sensory, interactive virtual reality experience, that you will experience on top of a motion platform.”

“FLY is a fully immersive experience, including visuals, sound, heat, scent and wind.”

“FLY is a single experience so only one person can book into any given 15 minute interval on the main motion platform.”

….. although in truth it isn’t fully clear how it works.

BA2119 - Flight of the Future

Rhys and I will be at a preview of the exhibition before it opens to the public on 1st August, so hopefully we can take a look and report back.

Visiting information:

The Saatchi Gallery is on Kings Road, a short walk from Sloane Square tube station.  The exhibition runs from 1st to 26th August.

You can learn more about the exhibition and VR experience on the Saatchi Gallery website here.

£20 tickets for the VR experience can be booked via here.

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  1. “Virtual realists” 🙄

    Are they people who are almost, but not quite, being realistic? 😉

    Still, the exhibition sounds interesting, even if the PR guff is a bit buzzwordy…

  2. L Allen says:

    I’ve only ever been to the bar at the Saatchi gallery. It’s a really nice spot. Maybe one day I’ll get around to looking at an exhibition there 🙂

  3. I am not sure what aviation will look like in the future but one thing is certain, BA will still be flogging cramped world and you’ll still not be able to use you Avios to fly to Australia!:(

  4. Not wanting to sound like a pedant – it’s Kitty Hawk, not Kitty beach (which looks to be somewhere south of Sydney).

    Surprised BA didn’t fact check their press release…

    • Craig says:

      You’re not being a pedant, it beggars belief that an organisation the size of BA can’t get basic historical facts right. It’s a good job that their IT systems are robust!

    • We’ve been to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. The statues and memorials at the site are amazing. It took them a long time to work out that starting a flight from the top of a hill was the wrong thing to do! The original ‘Flyer’ plane is the Air and Space Museum in Washington DC. The Wright Bros ‘cycle shop’ in Dayton, Ohio, where it all started, is on our ‘to do list’ to visit some day.

      • Alex W says:

        Do not miss the US Air Force museum in Dayton. By far the best aircraft museum in the world. Valkyrie, Bocks Car, 5x Air Force Ones, B-36, Memphis Belle, Komet, Me 262, B-2, Shuttle, X-15, Twin Mustang, Apollo 15 CM, Minuteman, name a famous air or space craft, it’s probably got one!

      • Colin MacKinnon says:

        And a piece of the original aircraft is on the wall of my airfield in Strathaven, Scotland!

  5. Peter says:

    Aviation in 20, 40, 60 years? All I want to know is if my flight with BA on 5/8/19 is on or off due to crews, pilots, Heathrow staff strikes.

  6. Dave Parsons says:

    Leonard da Vinci 😂

  7. Mikeact says:

    Two tickets booked. The Saatchi gallery is always worth a visit in any event.

  8. ankomonkey says:

    The second gallery feature comprises 3 mountains to scale. The first is called Ticket Price Mountain and is a short, easy climb. The second is marginally bigger and called APD Mountain. The third and final challenge is far more arduous and requires crampons – can anyone conquer YQ Mountain?

    • ankomonkey says:

      Feature 3 is the bowling alley, with BA-themed names for good scores – we have the ‘LHR Strike’, the ‘Cabin Crew Strike’ and the ‘Pilot Strike’.

    • EwanG says:

      Presumably the third mountain has many false summits and is continuing to grow in size?

      • Lady London says:

        Yes but remember thé height of the YQ peak is hardly ever stated eparately. You can get your binoculars out but any drclaration of YQ height will be made so small you cant see IT with binoculars. The YQ peak dwarfs the APD peak but they’ll mostly ne referred to as one peak by British Airways – ‘taxes and charges’

    • Lady London says:

      We could remove the YQ mountain with dynamite or something similar. But even a court case in the USA didnt remove it. But then British Airways would just build a castle pretty much the same size in the ticket space. They’d call it something else – but it’d remain the same size.

    • Lady London says:

      PS beware of ticket price mountain because sometimes, due to the overwhelming size of APD and YQ, to meet the desired selling price of ticket in some markets at some times, ticket price mountain will sometimes be a hole you can fall into and not a mountain above ground at all.

  9. the_real_a says:

    VR “experiences” with goggles generally leave me wanting to puke. I hope the technology has moved on from the last few years. Especially as it now coupled with a motion sim.

    • I wear glasses, so any VR/3D anything is out. Still, I look forward to visiting the rest of the exhibition.

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