Victoria and Albert museum is one of the most visited in the English capital. It is established in 1852 and its aim is to inspire the British designers and producers. The idea was of prince Albert’s who decided that the earnings of the world’s exhibition in 1951 will be for buying building for museum in south Kensington.
Today it is home of over four million exponents presenting the development of different cultures around the world. There are European, Indian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and Islamic items ranging from ceramics, glass, metalwork, sculptures to the costumes, armor, weapons and furniture in its stunning collection. Among the best known collections are: Theatre Galleries, sackler for art and education, and “Middle Ages and Renaissance” (opened in 2009.).
In the rooms devoted entirely to Britain, visitors can trace the development of art and design in the empire from 1500 to 1900. Here is the first produced fork in the world – from 1632. And this is just the tip of the iceberg.
In the Museum of Victoria and Albert you will see an impressive collection of Oriental decorative arts, fashion and jewelry, which covers the period from 17th century to today, metalwork, and more than 14,000 pieces of furniture from the UK, continental Europe and America who date from the medieval times until today.
The collections in the museum are so varied that it is difficult to identify the most important. As if the favorite among visitors are those halls which casts the most famous European sculptures and monuments. In the late 19th century, when few people were lucky and able to travel across the continent, these castings were very popular way to show some achievements of culture and art from Europe. Among other things, here you can see replicas of the famous column of Trajan, located in Rome, the Gate of Victory of Santiago de Compostela, and quite successful copy of the sculpture “David” by Michelangelo.
The museum building itself is also a landmark. Victorian style with elements of the Edwardian era.
The imposing facade is 220 meters high , made of red brick and Portland cement, designed by Aston Web in 1891. as addition to the main building. The construction has been raised for ten years – from 1899 to 1909.
Architects today define Web’s design as eclectic. Most parts carry a whiff of the Renaissance, while the building is in medieval style. Arches, supported by Roman columns are definitely classic. A tower above the main entrance reminds those built in the Gothic period, particularly in Scotland. Inside the preferred material is marble.
Victoria and Albert museum is one of the few that remained almost untouched by the bombings during World War II. Renovations began in 1960. Then a new wing dedicated to Henry Cole was added, and in 1990, 2001 and 2010 many other galleries were found.
Address: Cromwell Rd London, Greater London SW7 2RL, United Kingdom
Phone: 020 7942 2000