V&A Archive MA/19/5 ‘Trends in taste’ in the Johannesburg Star, South Africa, 30 August 1960. Joanna Weddell, 2014.

A Point of Departure

This post was written by Joanna Weddell, AHRC CDA Disseminating Design, Centre for Research and Development, University of Brighton and Research Department, the Victoria & Albert Museum.   This post is prompted by a curious caption and photograph in a press cuttings file on one of the major exhibitions of the V&A Circulation Department, English Chintz: […]

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hell - Copy

Welcome to Hell!

Looking at the V&A blog page this morning, I can see that Halloween has caught the imagination of a number of fellow Museum bloggers. However, I can’t pass up such an apt occasion on which to introduce you to two of the most gruesome and macabre objects going into the Europe Galleries. Both, fittingly, will […]

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The material used to decorate the truck laid out on the gallery floor.

Tiki Love Truck celebrates Day of the Dead

The Tiki Love Truck has been residing in the V&A’s Porter Gallery for the past three months as part of the Disobedient Objects exhibition. Like many of the objects in there, their uses will continue as originally intended once they are returned to their owners and back to the streets. The truck, however, won’t let being displayed in a […]

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PARROT CUP
Silver-gilt, diamonds
Emden, Germany, ca. 1620
Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.59:1,2-2008

Personal Favourites: installing beautiful creatures

This week my colleagues and I installed some extraordinarily beautiful, dazzling, precious pieces from the Gilbert Collection of silver in the V&A Whiteley Silver Galleries as part of the display Personal Favourites: Gold and Silver from the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection. While installation was in full flow, a mother walked along the gallery with […]

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A.19-1945, Altarpiece, Saint Boniface, St Philip, St Otillia, St James the Less, St Wolfgang © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

St Wolfgang of Regensburg

Aside from the annual devotionals to All Hallows, 31st October also marks the celebration of the feast of St Wolfgang, a 10th century monk and bishop born in Swabia, south-west Germany, in either 924 or 934. To give some idea of how holy Wolfgang was, he was known in his own time as Eleemosysnarius Major, […]

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Illustration to Edgar Allan Poe’s The Black Cat, Alphonse Legros, ca. 1860-1861.

Terrifying Tales

Today marks Halloween and with the chill in the air and the nights drawing in it is easy to see why this time of year has been seen as dark and sinister. As a keen reader of Gothic fiction and avid watcher of horror movies, Halloween has to be one of my favourite events in […]

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T.147-1974

There are so many shoes

How do you decide what shoes to include in the exhibition? There are over 2300 pairs (and some singles) in the V&A Collection; that includes footwear – shoes, sandals and boots – from the Asian department and Furniture, Textiles and Fashion department. A lot of shoes indeed. So to make a selection, the focus has to be on the story of […]

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Design for a gravestone for Caleb Hill by Philip Webb, 1888

A Wander among the Tombstones

Anyone who came to this page hoping for some shots of Liam Neeson looking menacing in a corduroy coat, please click here now. To anyone still reading, I thought Halloween was a good time to introduce you to some unexpected objects that keep popping up in the work of 19th-century architect-designers… Designs for tombstones. Philip […]

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bandhani 4916

The Reject Files

When the idea for an exhibition on Indian textiles was first given the go-ahead, I had some sleepless nights wondering how we could possibly fill even one of the V&A’s massive exhibition halls. I needn’t have worried. Now I have sleepless nights about how much we can reasonably  fit in… From an initial selection of nearly 300 objects, we have […]

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2014HG1087

Commemorating the Reformation in ‘ANNO SECULARI MDCCXVII DIE 31 OCT’

Today I bring you a commemoration of a commemoration! ‘IN MEMORIAM SECUNDI IUBILAEI EVANGELICI ANNO SECULARI MDCCXVII DIE 31 OCT[obris] CELEBRATI SENAT[us] FRANCOFURTI F [ieri] F[ecit] I I F’ The text above is found inscribed on a Reichstaler coin set into the base of a beaker going into the Europe Galleries. The inscription translates as: ‘In […]

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