Dawn Hoskin

Title: Assistant Curator
Department: Furniture, Textiles & Fashion

I am an Assistant Curator working on the development of the new Europe 1600-1800 Galleries. My interests are wide-ranging but subjects I have particularly enjoyed exploring for this project include: European depictions of Africa and Africans; Dutch domestic interiors; early ballooning; the gambling halls of 18th-century Venice; the fashion for singeries (depictions of monkeys apeing human behaviour!); wig-making and hairdressing. My 'favourite' object going into the new Europe Galleries changes on an almost daily basis ... I am also Co-Chair of the V&A's LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer) Group.

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In Memory of Toussaint Louverture


The 20th of May marked 272 years since the revolutionary François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture (1743-1803), was born into bondage in Haiti, the French island colony then known as Saint-Domingue (Santo Domingo). I was interested to read that in 2015 this date saw the unveiling of a new statue in memory of Toussaint Louverture, in the courtyard […]

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Beneath the Surface of Europe 1600-1800 at Photo London


Visitor Figures, out-takes from the V&A Annual Report, 2013/14; Photograph by Nigel Shafran from the series 'Visitor Figures, out-takes from the V&A Annual Report, 2013/14'
Nigel Shafran (1964-)
Victoria and Albert Museum

Taking advantage of the Bank Holiday, the other day I went to take a leisurely look around Photo London, the international photography fair taking place at Somerset House. Whilst wandering among wondrous examples of photography, stretching back to the earliest days of its development (pardon the pun) and experimentation, I found myself suddenly confronted by Europe 1600-1800. […]

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International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia 2015


Today is the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. This international event, was created in 2004 to draw the attention of policymakers, opinion leaders, social movements, the public and the media to the violence and discrimination experienced by LGBTI people internationally. The date of May 17th was specifically chosen to commemorate the day on which the World […]

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Born on This Day: Ole Worm – collector extraordinaire

worm crop

‘… [your] name and glory is not only renowned among one people and nation, but across the earth, wherever scientific and learned studies are practised and honoured.’ These rather adulatory words were penned to describe today’s ‘born on this day’ star, Ole Worm, the Danish physician, professor, antiquary, and collector extraordinaire born in 1588. As well as […]

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Upcoming Event – Zanele Muholi: In Conversation


UPDATE 21ST MAY: Unfortunately this event has been cancelled We’re very excited to be able announce an up-coming talk with the South African Photographer and visual activist Zanele Muholi. On Friday 22nd May, 7:30-8:30pm, Zanele will be speaking about her photography work and campaigning to combat discrimination and violence against LGBTQ communities. NB: This is a free event […]

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Out On Display #18: Tom of Finland


    Tom of Finland stamps Postage stamps, offset lithography Designed by Timo Berry, 2014 Given by Andrei Korepanov CD.55:1-2014 On display in room 74A   Tom of Finland (1920 – 1991) was the creator of some of the most enduring and erotic drawings of gay male life in the 20th century. Since his work burst onto […]

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Out On Display #17: Lou Reed


  Lou Reed in Concert Poster, offset lithograph Blue Egg Printing and Design Ltd. Great Britain, 1973 Given by Publicity and Display Ltd. S.4338-1995 On display in room 106B   This signature image of Lou Reed (1942 – 2013) was first used as the cover of his solo album Transformer (1972). It is reused here to promote […]

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Out On Display #16: Mask of a Dead Faun


    Mask of a Dead Faun Cast bronze Glyn Philpot England (London), c.1923 A.4-2008 On display in room 21             Glyn Philpot (1884 – 1937) made his name as a painter of society portraits (including that of Siegfried Sassoon), but in the 1920s he became interested in sculpture and the male nude. […]

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Lighting up the Studio


Last week a colleague mysteriously encouraged me to pop my head into the Photo Studio, for a ‘nice surprise’. Not knowing quite what to expect, I arrived to find Metalwork Curator Kirstin and Senior Metals Conservator Donna in the final stages of assembling the rather stunning chandelier which will be part of our Louis XIV display. To enable […]

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Out On Display #15: Inspired by Love


    Sappho, inspired by Love, Composes an Ode to Venus Gold pendant with pearl border After Angelica Kauffman Switzerland, c.1800 M.280-1919 On display in room 91M       Born on the island of Lesbos around 620BC, little is known for certain about Sappho’s life. In antiquity she was regularly counted among the greatest of poets and was […]

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