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Game of Clones: Electrotypes in Westeros

One of my eagle-eyed colleagues recently spotted that an object from the V&A’s collection appeared to have found its way into an episode of Game of Thrones. The object in question can be seen above in the hands of the particularly unpleasant Lord Walder Frey, played in the show by David Bradley. It is remarkably similar […]

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Remembering Martin Roth

V&A colleagues and friends share their memories of Martin Roth, the V&A’s Director from 2011 – 2016, who has sadly passed away. Tim Reeve, V&A Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer Many people who came across Martin would have seen the quintessential cultural leader – a museum director from central casting – tall, good looking, […]

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Family fun: the design secrets behind Secret Seekers

This is a glimpse into the design process behind Secret Seekers, the V&A’s new game for families, starting with a three day onsite ‘Creative Sprint’ at the V&A and ending at the glamorous launch of the new Exhibition Road Quarter on a balmy June evening. A great game starts with a great brief and the […]

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We Wear Culture – a new virtual fashion experience

18th-century Mantua

Clothes are shorthand for being human Claire Wilcox, 2001 From the fusion of fashion with surrealist art to Vivienne Westwood’s anarchic designs – we’ve collaborated with Google Arts and Culture to unlock the world of fashion with a new virtual experience and a host of online exhibitions detailing the incredible stories behind the V&A’s collections, […]

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Michelangelo’s David – Part 1: Creating virtual copies of casts

Plaster figure of Michelangelo's David (Mus.no. Repro.161-1857) during scanning at the Weston Cast Court Gallery. Image ©Plowman Craven

I often receive enquiries about the V&A’s plaster cast of Michelangelo’s David (Mus.no. 161-1857), which I have been researching since I cleaned and conserved it between 2013-14. Last year I received an unusual request for a 3D scan of the cast so a 1:1 physical model could be generated and used as a featured prop […]

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V&A Illustration Awards 2017 Winners Announced

On 16th of May, at a ceremony and private view here at the V&A, the winners of the 2017 V&A Illustration Awards were announced. The winner in each category received a £3,000 cash prize as well as a trophy and a certificate. As overall winner of the 2017 competition, A. Richard Allen is the recipient of the […]

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V&A Illustration Awards 2017 Shortlist

With just over two weeks to go before the winners are announced, the judges of the 2017 V&A Illustration Awards have whittled down the entries from nearly a thousand to just three in each category. On the 16th of May we’ll find out the winners of the awards for:

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Under the Skin of the Spirit of Gaiety – Part 3

Figure 1: The Spirit of Gaiety (S.2630-1996)

  This series of blog entries is about the scientific examination of the gold finish of the Spirit of Gaiety, the angel which once graced the dome of the Gaiety Theatre in London.   Elemental analysis* In my last blog I showed you what the layer structure of the Spirit of Gaiety looks like under […]

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Inspiring the next generation of designers with the V&A’s DesignLab Nation

The principles of design should form a portion of any permanent system of national education. So recommended the 1836 Select Committee on Arts and their Connection with Manufactures. Sir Henry Cole was even more blunt: “Straight lines are a national want”, he wrote. And, “unless you begin with the child and teach him the ABC […]

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Preparation of three 14th century gravestones for a display at the National Museum of Oman

Shaykh Mohammad’s gravestone (Mus. number A.5-1932) © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

A while ago, I was asked to assess the condition of three 14th century gravestones, which have since travelled to a newly built National Museum of Oman in Muscat. The gravestones are beautiful in themselves, but they also tell a very interesting story about trade in the Indian Ocean. They were carved at Khambhat in Gujarat from […]

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