Victoria and Albert Museum

The world’s greatest museum of art and design

Opening times

10.00 to 17.45 daily
10.00 to 22.00 Fridays

Archive

Its really rather nice as every time I step out into the galleries I meet a friend. The dance-going public is certainly supporting this exhibition. Happily however its not just friends and each day there are groups with notebooks jotting information down, groups with sketchpads drawing costumes, and others just engrossed in what they are seeing.Snap. This image, allegedly Craig’s favourite...
Reviews are out and we do like those with five stars. Several important choreographers working in Britain have been asked to comment on the exhibition on radio and it has been particularly satisfying that they seem to have liked our section on choreographers and choreography. Bakst's design for the Young Rajah chosen by Shobana Jeyasingh For Front Row Javier de Frutos, Shobana Jeyasingh and...
[video:http://vimeo.com/15124567 width:600 height:338]http://vimeo.com/15124567A time-lapse view of the two week long process of erecting Picasso's giant backdrop for Le Train Bleu in the V&A Exhibition Gallery with the help of a scaffolding tower, five riggers pulling it up and ten museum staff unrolling it.The backdrop for the 1924 Ballets Russes production of Le Train Bleu measures 10....
Last night was the Private View. Among the guests were several descendants of dancers and choreographer who worked with Diaghilev’s company. Isabelle Fokine was looking at an exhibit when the woman beside said to her son ‘this is a picture of my grandmother’; so the granddaughter of Fokine met the granddaughter of Karsavina. As Isabella later said ‘It seemed quite strange...
The weekend’s excitement for me was my article on Stanislas Idzikowski’s photo albums appearing in the Financial Times – largely as it always seemed so improbable that I would write for the FT. Although my friends are unlikely to read the FT in hard copy it will be widely picked up on the internet, indeed a colleague from Australia has already e-mailed to say she saw it. We...
Of course it is not finished installations always takes longer than you hope which is why there is a day ‘in hand’ but it has been a busy day. Labels had to mounted for all objects, mirrors to be installed to enliven cases, contextual images added to the props store, barriers placed to project objects including the cloths and sound levels to be balanced. Meanwhile there are...
It really is busy – all our last loans have arrived so those gaps on the walls are being filled. The couture fashions look stunning and really serve their purpose – you can clearly see the influence of Bakst, Picasso, Goncharova and Matisse and wouldn’t it be fun to wear such outfits! The two cartoons by Jean Cocteau are the last objects to go into the Nijinsky section....
The day begins with a presentation Geoff and I gave to all the V&A staff. So many individuals and departments have been involved as two thirds of our objects are from the Museum but its good for them to get a fuller picture of what we are presenting. Then back to the galleries. The Yves Saint Laurent outfits and Diaghilev’s passport have arrived from France. The need condition checking...
The Nijinsky case is being filled today. This includes both costumes we know he danced in and two mysteries – perhaps they will be solved by visitors. We have two versions of the costume for the Prince in Le Festin - why? The first was made in Russiaand is very worn – how did Nijinsky leap so impressively high in such a heavy tunic? The second hardly worn at all appears to have been...
The big excitement today is the arrival of the lighting team. Sudden the area we call ‘the prop store’ is not just a black hole. Not only is the exhibition beginning to be lit but the old theatre lights are being inserted in the display. From the start I felt we need to include old lights as throughout the C20th lighting for dance has been important. The Ballets Russes was a company...
L’Après-midi d’un faune Loans are coming in. Nicholas Bell from the British Library brought over music and dance notation scores. The first of two great thrills are Vaslav Nijinsky’s notation for L’Après-midi d’un faunewhich the B. L. generously disbound so that we could display it for the first time as it ought to be seen with two double pages at once. The second is...

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