Victoria and Albert Museum

The V&A Courtyard
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As the world's leading museum of art and design, the V&A enriches people's lives by promoting the practice of design and increasing knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of the designed world.

Venue Type:

Museum

Opening hours

10.00 to 17.45 daily
10.00 to 22.00 Fridays (selected galleries remain open after 18.00 - please see Gallery Closures for further information)
Closing commences 10 minutes before time stated

Closed 24, 25 and 26 December

Admission charges

Admission free
There may be a charge for some special exhibitions and events

Getting there

London Underground (The Tube): The V&A is a five minute walk from South Kensington underground station (on the Piccadilly, Circle and District Line). South Kensington is a five minute tube journey from Victoria, ten minutes from Covent Garden and Leicester Square and 15 minutes from King's Cross St Pancras.

The V&A is a ten minute walk from Knightsbridge underground station (on the Piccadilly Line). Knightsbridge is a ten minute tube journey from Covent Garden and Leicester Square and 15 minutes from Kings Cross St Pancras.

Bus: Buses C1, 14, 74 and 414 stop outside the Cromwell Road entrance. The Open Tour stop outside the Museum as part of their Double Decker Bus site-seeing tour of London.

Additional info

See website for details

The Victoria and Albert Museum's collections span two thousand years of art in virtually every medium, from many parts of the world, and visitors to the museum encounter a treasure house of amazing and beautiful objects. The Museum was established in 1852, following the enormous success of the Great Exhibition the previous year. Its founding principle was to make works of art available to all, to educate working people and to inspire British designers and manufacturers.

The Museum's ceramics, glass, textiles, dress, silver, ironwork, jewellery, furniture, sculpture, paintings, prints and photographs now span the cultures of Europe, North America, Asia and North Africa, and date from ancient times to the present day.

Although the V&A's collections are international in their scope, they contain many particularly important British works - especially British silver, ceramics, textiles and furniture.

Part of the RIBA Trust's British Architecture Library, a Designated Collection of national importance, is on display at this museum.

The collection provides comprehensive coverage of all aspects of architecture. It is fundamental to the study of architecture in Britain and is nationally and internationally significant.

Items from this collection

Collection details

World Cultures, Weapons and War, Toys and Hobbies, Social History, Photography, Personalities, Performing Arts, Music, Fine Art, Design, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Archives, Architecture, Archaeology

Key artists and exhibits

  • The British Galleries 1500-1900 tell the story of British design from the Tudor age to the Victorian era. Fifteen completely refurbished galleries are filled with exhibits reflecting all of the top British designers of the times. The galleries are enhanced by computer interactives, objects to handle, video screens and audio programmes. Highlights include the gigantic Great Bed of Ware (mentioned in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night) and the wedding suit worn by James II. Inspirational, beautiful and unmatched in scope, the British Galleries offer an entirely new visitor experience in a stunning and innovative setting.
  • Designated Collection
Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Maggie Davis in her wheelchair in her specially commissioned house

Display: architecture designed by and for deaf and disabled people

  • 10 February — 29 July 2018

At the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the display will focus on the design of a number of different buildings that have been shaped by the needs of deaf and disabled people.

These include a deaf church, a medieval almshouse, a contemporary architect-designed private house for a disabled client, a new vision for a mental illness asylum, and items from the archive of pioneering disability activists Maggie and Ken Davis, whose determination and vision saw them successfully commission in the 1970s the first council housing that allowed disabled people to live independently outside of institutionalised care.

Part of the History of Place project, which will also be running exhibitions and displays at MShed in Bristol and the Museum of Liverpool.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

FREE

Website

http://historyof.place/events/exhibition-at-the-victoria-and-albert-museum/

Everything you want to know about Jewellery

Everything You Want to Know about Jewellery

  • 2 — 3 December 2017 11am-4pm

This course reveals the history of Western jewellery from late Antiquity till today and gives insight into the comprehensive collection of 3,500 jewels in the William and Judith Bollinger Jewellery Gallery. It will explore how fashions in dress determined what jewellery was worn and how international styles and art movements were inspirational for the designs. The course will also look at how changes in economy and society influenced the jewels worn and the personal messages of jewellery which accompanies the wearer through life and marks special occasions. Other than being adornment and symbols of status, jewels express devotion, grief, love and hope.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£288 full price, £260 over 60s, £195 concessions

Website

https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/8j47JLW3/everything-you-want-to-know-about-jewellery-2017

Eduardo Paolozzi and the Influence of Childhood Cultures

Eduardo Paolozzi and the Influence of Childhood Cultures

  • 20 — 21 January 2018 11am-4pm

Celebrate the playful incongruity of Eduardo Paolozzi’s work with childlike curiosity. Considering the influence of childhood cultures on his work, gain privileged access to the intriguing objects of Paolozzi’s ‘Krazy Kat Arkive’ at Blythe House as well as the evocative collections of both the V&A Museum of Childhood and V&A Prints and Drawing Room.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£288 full price, £260 over 60s, £195 concessions

Website

https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/q1Q96Z13/paolozzi-and-the-influence-of-childhood-cultures-2018

Power and Prestige in 16th and 17th Century Mughal South Asia

Power and Prestige in 16th and 17th Century Mughal South Asia

  • 3 — 4 February 2018 11am-4pm

Tracing their lineage from both Chinghis Khan and Timur, the Mughal dynasty (1526-1858) at its greatest extent ruled over the entire South Asian region and its rulers created one of the most luxurious empires of their time. As a Muslim elite reigning over a local South Asian population, it was important for the Mughal emperors to create a strong visual identity to aid in consolidating their rule.

Focusing on the reigns of three emperors, Akbar (r.1556-1605), Jahangir (r.1605-27) and Shah Jahan (r. 1628-58), this 2-day course will thematically explore how these rulers invested in extensive patronage of the arts in order to create and project a visual language of power and prestige. This took multiple forms, including the production of magnificent miniature paintings, iconic architecture and dazzling, bejewelled objects. By contextualising their creation within the political, historical and artistic milieu of the Mughal court, it will be seen that several factors were continuously in play in the wider sphere of their making.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£288 full price, £260 over 60s, £195 concessions

Website

https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/D2ODv9oN/power-and-prestige-in-16th-and-17th-century-mughal-south-asia-2018

History of Irish Art

A History of Irish Art

  • 10 March 2018 11am-4pm

Supported by contextual and historical information, this course will trace the history of Irish art from c.3300 BC to the present day. Covering a range of historical objects, paintings, manuscripts and sculptures such as the Book of Kells and Harry Clarke’s stained glass windows, it will also explore Ireland’s contribution to the wider art world including the origins of the phrase the “white cube”.

Ireland’s rich social and cultural heritage has been explored for millennia through the medium of art. Although most well-known for its contribution to the written word, this course will demonstrate the unique and fascinating history of Ireland’s artistic treasures. From the Stone Art of Newgrange, which pre dates the pyramids and Stonehenge, to the work of Jack B. Yeats, the artworks and objects discussed will provide a window into Ireland’s distinctive cultural identity.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£288 full price, £260 over 60s, £195 concessions

Website

https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/qRBAbrVX/a-history-of-irish-art-2018

Art Glass and Glass Artists: Chemists, Craftsmen, Visionaries

Art Glass and Glass Artists: Chemists, Craftsmen, Visionaries

  • 21 — 22 April 2018 11am-4pm

Glass is one of the oldest man-made materials and certainly the most mysterious. Neither solid, liquid nor gas, neither crystal nor stone, it exists in a state of its own; smooth and hard, it is also fragile, fracturing to produce cutting edges of lethal sharpness. Glass can be colourless, transparent, brilliantly colourful or opaque depending on the precise balance of its chemical constituents; to be shaped it must be heated and reheated to extreme temperatures and as it cools it may shatter explosively without stringent precautions. Above all, worked glass is unpredictable: no two pieces will ever be identical, and what you think you placed in the kiln will rarely if ever come out exactly as you expected and planned. Glass is dangerous, difficult and glamorous; a combination which has fascinated craftsmen and artists, chemists and collectors throughout history.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£288 full price, £260 over 60s, £195 concessions

Website

https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/VDqrdq2P/art-glass-and-glass-artists-chemists-craftsmen-visionaries-2018

Menswear and Masculinites

Menswear and Masculinities

  • 12 — 13 May 2018 11am-4pm

By 2020, the global menswear industry is expected to be worth $33 billion. Referencing the V&A’s diverse collection of men’s clothing and dress accessories, unpick the social and political threads that hold the male wardrobe together, considering changing attitudes across the ages and into the future.

Thematic lectures that focus on suiting and shoes, cutting and colours will consider how and why attitudes to men’s dress have changed between the Middle Ages and modernity. Unravelling the complex relationship that men have with their clothing, the course will place current menswear trends in their social context and explore future possibilities for the menswear industry.

Suitable for

  • 18+

Admission

£288 full price, £260 over 60s, £195 concessions

Website

https://www.vam.ac.uk/event/ZLnXjPRG/menswear-and-masculinities-2018

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Architectural Style

http://www.vam.ac.uk/vastatic/microsites/architecture/style_level1.php?id=0

Website with pictures and descriptions of a broad range of architectural styles, historical and contemporary Western, Asian and Islamic. There is also an interactive Style Quiz.

Getting there

London Underground (The Tube): The V&A is a five minute walk from South Kensington underground station (on the Piccadilly, Circle and District Line). South Kensington is a five minute tube journey from Victoria, ten minutes from Covent Garden and Leicester Square and 15 minutes from King's Cross St Pancras.

The V&A is a ten minute walk from Knightsbridge underground station (on the Piccadilly Line). Knightsbridge is a ten minute tube journey from Covent Garden and Leicester Square and 15 minutes from Kings Cross St Pancras.

Bus: Buses C1, 14, 74 and 414 stop outside the Cromwell Road entrance. The Open Tour stop outside the Museum as part of their Double Decker Bus site-seeing tour of London.

Victoria and Albert Museum
Cromwell Road
South Kensington
London
Greater London
SW7 2RL
England

Website

www.vam.ac.uk

E-mail

vanda@vam.ac.uk

Telephone

020 7942 2000

All information is supplied by the venues or providers themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.