The Art of Design: Kenwood in the Kitchen at Lightbox

By Ben Miller | 04 May 2012
An image of a red, black and white advert for a food mixer during the mid-19th century
Kenwood Minor A305 Packaging (1950s)© Kenwood
Exhibition: The Art of Design: Kenwood in the Kitchen, The Lightbox, Woking, until June 24 2012

Mankind owes much to Kenneth Wood. After founding Woodlau Industries in 1947, the Woking designer made the A100 – the first electric toaster to crisp both sides without touching the bread – and the Kenwood Chef (“making good eating a pleasure that’s yours for a lifetime”), as well as the first food mixer to use an electronic speed control.

That development turned the renamed Kenwood into a household name, turning over £1.5 million in less than ten years.

The innovative designs had a revolutionary impact on the social side of the 1950s and 1960s, showcased here through stories, vintage ads, product reviews and new research illustrating how the brand’s dynamic ethos was a sign of the post-war boom times.

“The Kenwood story has continually embraced innovation while appreciating domestic values,” observes curator Michael Regan, who says the show “brings Kenwood back to Woking”.

“It has resulted in 65 years of products that are both a commercial success and a joy to use. The brand has made a tremendous contribution to Britain’s status as a product design pioneer.

“These products have had such a significant impact upon our everyday lives.”

  • Open 10.30am-5pm (11am-5pm Sunday, closed Monday). Admission free.

More pictures:

A photo of an electric food processor with whizzers placed inside a large white bowl
Kenwood Chefette, Model A320 (1960s)© Kenwood
A photo of a black and white modern food processor with a setting button on its side
Kenwood Chef Mixer, Model A901 (1976-88)© Kenwood
A photo of the inside of a silver metallic toaster against a plain white background
A100 Turnover Toaster (circa 1950)© Kenwood
An image of a cream and black coloured food processor with a large silver bowl
Kenwood Chef Mixer, Model A700 (1950s)© Kenwood
A photo of a blue and white food processor with protruding silver whizzing implements
Kenwood Chefette, Model A340 (circa 1970)© Kenwood
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