News and Updates

Take a look at what goes on behind-the-scenes in the world’s leading museum of art and design. From bestselling exhibitions to hidden gems in the collections, learn about our latest projects, ideas and discoveries.

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‘A Third Gender: Beautiful Youths in Japanese Prints’ – A Review

‘A Third Gender: Beautiful Youths in Japanese Prints’ is an ambitious exhibition. It sets out to explore the complex issues of gender identity, social status and sexual relationships in Japan during the Edo period (1603-1868). It surpasses these objectives and provides a forum for discussion on gender identity and non-hetronorm ideologies. The exhibition’s title ‘A […]

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Guest blog post: Introduction to Wearables

By Anna Blumenkranz and Emilie Giles When we imagine wearable technology we might think about activity trackers such as the Fitbit or clothing which can be swiped to give us information such as the Google and Levi Commuter Trucker Jacket. However, there is also a playful and DIY-craft-based approach to wearable technology. We ran a two […]

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IIIF Workshop & Showcase Report

Last week I attended the International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) workshop and showcase organised to great effect by the University of Edinburgh & the National Library of Scotland. As discussed in previous posts, IIIF is a new approach that allows museums and galleries to display and unify their collection images online. Workshop The workshop (run as an Unconference) provided […]

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John Dillon – autograph collector

Nowadays we tend to use the terms ‘autograph’ and ‘signature’ interchangeably. When we ask a celebrity for his autograph, he usually scribbles his personal signature. There is, however, a telling distinction between an autograph and a signature, which the autograph collector Ray Rawlins learned through a frosty encounter with a member of the British aristocracy: […]

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Open Week in the Ceramics Residency Studio

Showcave, Bethan Lloyd Worthington

The Open Week marks the end of artist Bethan Lloyd Worthington‘s six month residency in the Ceramics Collections. The studio will be cleared for a display of new work, fragments and plans for future projects exploring landscape and place.

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Drawing is Thinking on a Page

The V&A’s collections offer amazing opportunities for school students to develop research and drawing skills. Here’s a recent article I wrote for AD Magazine (Spring 2017, Issue 18, published by the National Society for Education in Art and Design (NSEAD), that tells you more… A sketch by Sir Joseph Paxton of the structure that housed the […]

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People, Places and Things: New Models for Collections-Based Research

A ‘parliament of things’ holds court in an anatomical theatre, precious paintings are suspended for all to see in a giant mirrored bowl, migration histories and scientific mysteries are painstakingly teased out of 300 year-old woven silk and metal – museum research is more adventurous than ever and the inaugural symposium of the V&A Research […]

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The Cabinet of Curiosities: Reflections on modern art historical thinking

Portrait of Elias Ashmole

If you, like me, are curious about cabinets of curiosity, the inaugural Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Lecture on the history of collecting was a key date. Given by esteemed art historian and authority on the history of collecting, Professor Paula Findlen, it was South Kensington’s hottest ticket. If you were disappointed not to get one, […]

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Tom Hammick, winner of the V&A Prize at the International Print Biennale, Newcastle, 2016

The V&A has collected the best of contemporary printmaking since its foundation and now has an internationally renowned collection of modern and contemporary prints. For this reason the V&A has been closely involved with the International Print Biennale in Newcastle since it was established in 2009. The biennale is the largest printmaking event in the […]

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Regional Art Auction House Sale Catalogues in the National Art Library

The National Art Library collects catalogues from the world’s major auction houses as well as others that cover the collections of the V&A Museum. Art auction houses mirror the developments and trends in the art collecting world, changing focus, subjects, locations and identity. Sotheby’s Belgravia was opened to meet the demand for Victorian paintings and furniture […]

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