For pure pleasure and love of art, we have compiled a list of must-see museums; now it’s the turn of a breath of fresh art at the Victoria & Albert Museum.
The Victoria & Albert Museum on the History side
The V&A Museum is a museum of art and design. Created in 1852 during the reign of Queen Victoria, it bears her name and that of her dear and tender Prince Albert. Its various collections alone cover 3,000 years of art from Europe, Asia, America, and North Africa.
The museum was designed after the Universal Exhibition of 1851 and bore the name of South Kensington Museum since it is (and has always been) located in the French Quarter of London, having for a neighbor (among others) the Natural History Museum. In its infancy, its primary mission was to perpetuate the know-how of artisans by exhibiting British manufactured parts. Today, his collection is international and so extensive that it is impossible to exhibit the extent of his pieces for all to see.
The Victoria & Albert Museum figures side
Like many museums in London, it’s so big that it’s impossible to see all four corners at once. And for a good reason: the monument covers 5 hectares and is organized into 145 galleries containing 4 million objects. This makes it the world’s largest museum of applied and decorative art. Each year, in normal times, it welcomes more than two million art enthusiasts within its walls.
The masterpieces of the Victoria & Albert Museum
So let’s start with the collection of Islamic art. The V&A contains approximately 20,000 objects from the Islamic world, dated from the 7th to the 20th century, coming straight from Spain, North Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, and Afghanistan. Among other things, the gallery will find magnificent mosaics in azure colors. But his masterpiece is certainly the handmade Persian carpet, “The Ardabil Carpet,” the oldest carpet in the world (1539). It will impress you with its size, and you will find it under glass, particularly to protect it from light.
How to get to the Victoria & Albert Museum without going through the Sculpture Gallery? It is the richest post-classical European collection in the world! You will find all styles: commemorative works, portraits, mythical or religious statues, decoration… Whether they come from the Baroque, Renaissance, Classical, Victorian, or Art Nouveau periods, there is something for everyone. !
Finally, return to the starting point of your visit: the collection of fashion suits. Here again, it rises to the world’s roof regarding diversity and density. Do your shopping (or at least get inspired) by strolling among these feminine and masculine outfits dating from 1930s Spain, the English 18th century, and pharaonic Egypt, or admire the sublime pieces designed by Alexander McQueen or Yves Saint-Laurent.