Museum of Childhood

Welcome to the Museum of Childhood on the V&A Blog. Read our latest news, follow our exciting projects and learn more about our collections and activities.

The V&A Museum of Childhood is located in London’s Bethnal Green. vam.ac.uk/moc

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Maria Graham: trailblazer and peepshow maker

Fig. 1. Peepshow of the ‘View of L’Angostura de Paine in Chile’, ca.1835 by Maria Graham.

Within the hundreds of captivating paper peepshows newly acquired by the National Art Library from the Gestetner Collection, there is one peepshow whose story and splendour, I feel, eclipses all the rest. Handmade and painted in watercolour, ‘View from L’Angostura de Paine in Chile’[i], ca.1835 (fig.1), is as intriguing as it is beautiful. This humble […]

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New acquisition: Portrait of Charles Bedford as an infant

Portrait of Charles Bedford as an infant by Francis Hayman

The Museum recently welcomed a very exciting new acquisition to its fine art holdings – a portrait of Charles Bedford as an infant by the artist Francis Hayman, painted in 1744 or 1745. Perhaps not as famous as his contemporary Hogarth or his pupil Gainsborough, Hayman was an important figure in the art world in […]

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Standing tall: Size matters

Men's platform heels, Italy, ca.1972-75

A review of ‘Standing tall: The curious history of men in heels’ at the Bata Shoe Museum, Toronto. Who would’ve thought that a few inches could be so significant, but in the case of men’s heels it appears that size really does matter. ‘Standing tall: The curious history of men in heels’ is a thought-provoking exhibition at the […]

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Unwrapping Christmas at the V&A Museum of Childhood

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“Christmas, I always look upon as a most dear happy time, also for Albert, who enjoyed it naturally still more in his happy home, which mine, certainly, as a child, was not. It is a pleasure to have this blessed festival associated with one’s happiest days. The very smell of the Christmas Trees of pleasant […]

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Back to School at the V&A Museum of Childhood

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Between buying new shoes, digging out the school uniform and re-setting body clocks, we recommend adding a museum visit to spark a conversation during your family’s back-to-school preparations. Reality is setting in…the summer holidays are drawing to a close, new pencil cases and football boots are being bought, child care logistics and pick-ups are being […]

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On your marks, get set, BAKE! At the Museum of Childhood.

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The Great British Summer is finally underway, which means it’s time to enter the tent once again and enjoy a season of master bakes and show-stopping cakes. That’s right, once again we welcome the Great British Bake Off back on to our screens. We thought we’d whet your appetite for the baking escapades and delve […]

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Telling stories and drawing life – Indian Warli Community projects at the V&A Museum of Childhood

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“Our history is not written, it is drawn: we tell you stories, we tell you about our life.” Jivya Soma Mashe. The current exhibition on display in the Museum’s Front Room Gallery greets you with sunny yellow walls and delicate lace-like paintings, but it’s the stories behind the art that have inspired friendship and learning […]

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New acquisition: Moon Shoes

Pair of moon shoes, unknown manufacturer, probably British, 1950s-1960s © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

For regular readers of the V&A blog, this post could appear like a deliberate follow-on from our last space-themed bulletin. I assure you all, this is merely a coincidence and we at the MoC have not suddenly gone mad for all things cosmic. That said, we do have a very good collection of space toys, […]

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New acquisition: LEGO Death Star

Overall view of the Death Star © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

A quick note about a new acquisition made by the MoC this month: a LEGO Star Wars Death Star.     The eagle-eyed and long-remembering among you might remember seeing this object in our War Games exhibition, recently returned to us from Plymouth City Museum after two years on tour. It was shown in the […]

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More Than Meets the Eye: Transformers, me and the MoC

Ironhide, the Autobots' second in command, shown transformed with his 'battle sled'. Museum no. B.105-1994, Copyright Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Transformers are alien robots hailing from the planet Cybertron, a metallic world riven by aeons of civil war between Heroic Autobots and Evil Decepticons. The differences between these two factions are absolute: Autobots are peace-loving, kind and curious about humanity; Decepticons are bellicose, authoritarian and contemptuous of other lifeforms. Transformers came to Earth by accident: […]

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