Decorative Products Guide

James Latham Provides Materials for Plywood Exhibition at the V&A

Added 05.11.17

James Latham is providing plywood for the interior of an exhibition about the eclectic history of the sheet material which opens on 15 July at the Victoria and Albert Museum – known as the world’s leading museum of art and design.

Plywood: Material of the Modern World will run between 15 July and 12 November 2017 and will explore the innovative use of plywood in objects ranging from vehicles to furniture, and from architecture to graphic design - offering a new perspective of this versatile material.

James Latham’s unrivalled knowledge and passion for timber, and in particular, its incredible history of selling this product - which began more than two and a half centuries ago – and included supplying plywood for the manufacture of Spitfire aircrafts during World War 2, has close links to the exhibition which includes the story of the fastest and highest-flying aeroplane of WWII, the de Havilland Mosquito.

Other highlights will include a moulded plywood leg splint designed by Charles and Ray Eames in 1942, surfboards, and designs for mass-produced US prefabricated housing.

Plywood: Material of the Modern World is co-curated by Christopher Wilk, Keeper of Furniture, Textiles and Fashion at the V&A, and Elizabeth Bisley, Curator in the Department of Furniture, Textiles and Fashion at the V&A. The exhibition brings together significant new research with new acquisitions and objects that have never before been on public display. It will take visitors through plywood’s many reputational transformations; from a cheap product that was often hidden or maligned for its inferiority to solid timber, to the material prized by mid-century modernists and by today’s flourishing maker movement.
Chris Sutton, Managing Director of James Latham said: “This exhibition will look at the many different methods of manufacture using plywood and its history, from ancient times to use in today’s digital age so it is a perfect fit for James Latham, particularly because of our 260-year history in which time we will have supplied plywood for many of the innovative uses and applications which are being highlighted.”


For more information on Latham’s full range of materials: phone 0116 257 3415, e-mail [email protected]  or visit
For further information about Plywood at the V&A please contact Jenny Stewart ([email protected] ; +44 (0) 7885 467 181)  or Benjamin Ward ([email protected] ; +44 (0) 7837 134 193)
Connect with James Latham:
Twitter;- @lathamsltd

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