Victoria Albert Museum London

The Victoria & Albert Museum, or the V&A, as it is affectionately known, is located near the South Kensington tube stop. It is one of the world’s greatest museums of art and design. It boasts an extensive collection of amazing artefacts – ceramics, furniture, fashion, glass, jewellery, metalwork, photographs, textiles, paintings and sculpture – the V&A has it all.

Permanent Collection

Divided into fifteen separate sub collections, the art at the V&A is breathtaking. It encompasses artwork and ordinary items split by type, for example ceramics, paintings and drawings; by time period and styles; and by field, for example architecture, sculpture and photography.

You can pick up a map and plan your visit using the computers at the Information Centre, near the Buddhist sculpture Gallery and start exploring on your own. If you prefer, you can also join a free introductory tour run by V&A guides. These run every hour from 10:30 am and start from the Meeting Point in the Grand Entrance.

Exhibitions

The V&A plays host to an ever-changing list of exhibitions and displays. They cover all sorts of subjects from design to fashion, and from architecture to photography. Many objets d’art find a place of pride in the V&A’s halls and glass display cases, anything from 18th century silver work from England to geometric ceramic Islamic designs. Some exhibitions may charge a small fee, but the majority of these are free.

Events

On the last Friday of every month, the V&A hosts Friday late, a themed contemporary event night. Designers and artists take the floor and talks about recent developments or hot topics are held. There are also free concerts by musicians in the Norfolk House Music Room from 18:30 to 19:30 on these nights. Other events include Fashion in Motion catwalk events where the latest in sartorial developments are paraded in the V&A.

Shop

If a beautiful piece of art or superbly cut jacket catches your eye in the galleries, tou mustn’t miss a visit to the V&A shop, a favourite with their many visitors. Here you can find a range of products ranging from books and CDs to homeware, jewellery, clothing and accessories, stationery and games, all inspired by the Museum’s collections. You can also shop at the V&A online.

Logistics:

The V&A is located on Cromwell Road, in South West London. It is only ten minutes walk away from Harrods, Knightsbridge and Hyde Park. Admission to the galleries is free but a charge may apply to some events and exhibitions. The Museum is open from 10:00 to 17:45 every day except for Christmas holidays. On Fridays the V&A is open until 22:00, with selected galleries open after 18:00.