From the Kodak camera to the Kenwood Chef, with Parker pens, taxi cabs and Anglepoise lamps all squeezed inbetween, the range of Kenneth Grange is awe-inspiring. The designer is the focus of the Design Museum's major summer exhibition - a celebratory retrospective of more than 50 years of Grange's career to date. And while it might appear on the surface to be an exhibition of quite ordinary everyday items, it's also an extraordinary eye opener, featuring all kinds of innovations that have in some way or other helped to modernise British life over the decades.
Certainly, the fact that one man is responsible for designing so many of the products and appliances that shape British life is both inspiring and a little shocking. Born in 1929, Grange has designed the archetypes for number of domestic products: Razors for Wilkinson Sword, cigarette lighters for Ronson, Irons for Morphy Richards, and so on, before in 1972 (alongside Alan Fletcher, Theo Crosby, Colin Forbes and Mervyn Kurlansky) he established Pentagram, the multi-disciplinary design consultancy with near-legendary success worldwide. Hipsters today can sing his praises as the man behind the Kodak instamatic camera in 1968, the start of a new generation of portable, inexpensive cameras - and the inspiration behind a million iPhone apps forty years later. And lest we forget the high speed Intercity 125 train appears in his repertoire too.
Despite that his products are universally recognised, and despite being made a Royal Designer for Industry in 1969, and receiving a CBE in 1984, Grange has - always working on behalf of another brand - somehow remained a relatively quiet presence in the background over the years. Charming, influential and infectiously passionate about his work, he is well respected and revered within the design community, but it is surely time for him to become a household name himself, alongside his work. This blockbuster of an entertainingly educational exhibition sings the praises for this hero of modern design: of food mixers and fountain pens - and about time.