From Artifice to Artefact

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As assistant curator of loans in the Word and Image department it is my job to make sure that everything that goes on exhibition from our collections is properly documented and prepared for display. The Word and Image department (WID) houses the V&A’s collections of Prints, Drawings, Paintings, Photographs, the Archive of Art and Design […]

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‘Europe and Britannia’ (V&A Podcast: Salon II)

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Although they have now been open for exactly six weeks, I have to admit that I still get a thrill from popping down into the Europe Galleries to find them now populated, not only with objects but also real-live visitors. Visitors considering objects; taking in the new high ceilings and opened up spaces; conscientiously reading […]

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The Moroccan Fashion Designer Naima Bennis (1940-2008)

Female gandura (a garment that was initially only worn by men before Moroccan  fashion designers introduced it for women in elegant fabrics and colours), made of a fluid printed silk and decorated with characteristic loop braids called sfifa. Designed by Naima Bennis, c. 1970. V&;A: ME.16-2015

By M. Angela Jansen Visiting Scholar in the Research Department at the V&A The main aim of the Moroccan Fashion project  at the V&A is to establish a representative collection of Moroccan men and women’s urban fashion from the postcolonial period to the present. The 1960s and 70s especially have been a high priority area, […]

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V&A Podcast: Salon II: ‘Europa vs. Britannia’

Valance, Unknown, about 1790, England, Museum no. T.63-1936, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

There is a beautiful timeliness to the ‘What Was Europe?’ Salon series, which was seen particularly in the most recent Salon’s theme: ‘Europa vs. Britannia’. For the title of the Salon, we see ‘Europa’, the name of the goddess from Ancient Greek mythology, famed for her abduction by Zeus in the form of a white […]

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Guest post: Plaster cast of Michelangelo’s David in the plaster cast workshop of the Royal Museums of Art and History, Brussels

PICTURE 1 : David in the Brussels plaster cast workshop ©KMKG-MRAH, Brussels

Nele Strobbe is Head of the Plaster Cast Workshop at the Royal Museums of Art and History, Brussels The plaster cast of Michelangelo’s David at the Victoria and Albert Museum has, in addition to his ‘cousin’ in the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow, another one in Brussels. Currently most of this David […]

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Peter Brook from Archive to Action: Kingston Museum

One of Eadweard Muybridge’s Discs © Kingston Museum & Heritage Service

This is a guest post by Chiara Russo, Learning and Engagement Officer at Kingston Museum & Heritage Service. Kingston Museum is part of the Kingston Hub, working  with the Rose Theatre Kingston and their Youth Theatre on the Peter Brook Outreach Project. It is 9.55 am on a Saturday morning. My colleague Jack and I […]

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National Libraries Day: Researching the History of the National Art Library

V&A Interior - Entrance to The National Art Library; with architectural pediment above the door; 
V&A Museum; 
23rd December 2013.

Did you know that the Library is older than the V&A itself? Or that one of its early Keepers, the irascible W. H. James Weale, once chased an unwary bookseller through the reading room for trying to sell him a collection of ‘obscene prints’? Or that it counts not one but three copies of Shakespeare’s […]

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Drawing down the Moon

Brooch, maker unknown, about 1888, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

British astronaut Tim Peake has us all staring up into the night sky just a bit more often at the moment and he’s sending back fantastic pictures of our planet. At the V&A, we have been doing our own sky-gazing for our latest project with the Virtual Schools; last year, we ‘Designed the World’, and […]

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Riveting Rivets

Left to right: rivet, rivet plate, riveter

A good blog should be a riveting read, but this is a blog about riveting… Over the last week this fanciful tool has become a trusted friend as I face the challenge of ensuring our mannequins are going to keep their bits together for the Undressed exhibition and subsequent tour. Forget the saucy underwear – this is what gets me […]

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Rut Bryk 1916-1999

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This post was written by Joanna Weddell, Researcher at the University of Brighton. She is currently completing an AHRC-funded Collaborative Doctoral Award entitled Disseminating Design, which examines the regional impact of the Circulation Department in the post-war period 1947-77. To mark the centenary of her birth, this post features the work of Finnish designer and ceramic […]

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