Curated by David Sylvester, this was the first exhibition in Britain, in a publicly funded art gallery, devoted solely to a film production designer. The show focused on twenty-nine projects, concentrating almost exclusively on Adam’s designs for the cinema, with the exception of two great operas, namely Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West and Alban Berg’s Wozzeck.
Central to this presentation was a compilation of film extracts that were selected for their tremendous visual impact. However, the entrance to the exhibition instantly immersed viewers in Ken Adam’s world. It was his idea that the South Rooms should give visitors a real sense of one of his most remarkable film-set designs. By extending his original drawing for the Dr Strangelove War Room so that its proportions matched the gallery’s when it was enlarged from floor to ceiling, and by surrounding it with enlarged photographic stills of the set, he created a Pentagon-on-the-Park.