V&a

Lest we forget

Portrait of the week

7 November 2015 9:00 am

Home The all-party Foreign Affairs Committee urged David Cameron, the Prime Minister, not to press ahead with a Commons vote…

Illusions of grandeur: Roy Strong as a Stuart king (Charles I, after Sir Anthony Van Dyck)

Camp carnival: Roy Strong’s 80th birthday pageant

1 August 2015 9:00 am

For his 75th birthday, Sir Roy Strong gave himself a personal trainer. For his 80th, he has commissioned a book…

Cornelia Parker’s War Room at the Whitworth, Manchester

What are modern museums really for?

30 May 2015 9:00 am

Do we really need museums in the age of Wikipedia and Google? William Cook thinks we do but his children don’t agree

‘Combs, Hair Highway’, 2014, by Studio Swine

Luxury isn’t the opposite of poverty but the opposite of vulgarity - but don’t tell the V&A

25 April 2015 9:00 am

Different concepts of luxury may be inferred from a comparison of the wedding feast of Charles Bovary and Emma Rouault…

Boris Johnson on his plans for the Olympic Park: inspired or whimsical?

18 April 2015 9:00 am

Jack Wakefield on the Mayor’s ambitious, not to say whimsical, vision for the Olympic Park

50 shades of beige: English National Ballet's Modern Masters at Sadler's Wells, reviewed

21 March 2015 9:00 am

My moment of the week was stumbling into the shocking, fantastical Cabinet of Curiosities in the Alexander McQueen show at…

The dramatic centrepiece to McQueen’s 2001 spring/summer collection set in an asylum

Alexander McQueen may have been a prat but at least he was an interesting one

14 March 2015 9:00 am

Alexander McQueen may have been a prat but at least he was an interesting one, says Shura Slater

‘Woman at Her Toilette’, 1875/80, by Berthe Morisot

2015 in exhibitions - painting still rules

3 January 2015 9:00 am

The art on show over the coming year demonstrates that we still live in an age of mighty painters, says Martin Gayford

Conservator Johanna Puisto dusts the cast of Michelangelo’s ‘David’ post-conservation, November 2014

The reopened V&A Cast Courts are a fabulous spectacle of Victorian theft and reverence

22 November 2014 9:00 am

The great municipal museums are products of the 19th-century imagination, evidence of lofty ambitions and cringe-making limitations. They are exact…

Why are students of curation being taught to ignore the public and be suspicious of enterprise?

22 November 2014 9:00 am

The world exists and then it disappears, piece by piece, the gaps widening until one age is replaced by another,…

Russians made the theatre space the most liberating imaginative device ever invented

1 November 2014 9:00 am

You have to hand it to the Russians. They beat us into space, beat us to sexual equality, and a…

‘Water-meadows near Salisbury’, 1829/30, by John Constable

Curator-driven ambitions mar this Constable show at the V&A

4 October 2014 9:00 am

The V&A has an unparalleled collection of hundreds of works by John Constable (1776–1837), but hardly anyone seems to know…

‘I wish my boyfriend was as dirty as your policies’, 2011,by Coral Stoakes

Agitprop, love trucks and leaflet bombs: the art of protest

30 August 2014 9:00 am

Titles can be misleading, and in case you have visions of microwave ovens running amok or washing machines crunching up…

Design by William Kent for a cascade at Chatsworth, c.1735–40; below, the Bute epergne, 1756, by Thomas Heming, designed by Kent

William Kent was an ideas man - the Damien Hirst of the 18th century

12 April 2014 9:00 am

How important is William Kent (1685–1748)? He’s not exactly a household name and yet this English painter and architect, apprenticed…

A master craftsman of the anecdote

15 March 2014 9:00 am

One of the many charms of this book is its sheer unexpectedness, which makes it hard to review, for to…

Would you have been let in to an '80s club? 

18 January 2014 9:00 am

People will go to extraordinary lengths to get into a nightclub. Nowadays you must wear something tight, and look slinky.…

The man who transformed houses

4 January 2014 9:00 am

Alec Cobbe is a designer, painter, musician, picture restorer and collector, and has recently donated drawings, photographs and other archives…

Rowlett’s ‘Canaletto’s View, Grey Day, South Westerly Blowing the Clouds’, 2013

How China's Bayeux Tapestry differs from ours

9 November 2013 9:00 am

The V&A’s remarkable survey of Chinese painting begins quietly with a beautiful scroll depicting ‘Court Ladies Preparing Newly Woven Silk’,…

Detail from ‘Saying Farewell at Xunyang’, 16th century, by Qiu Ying

What my addiction to Chinese painting made me do

9 November 2013 9:00 am

My addiction to Chinese landscape painting began in 1965 at the V&A, in a travelling exhibition of the Crawford Collection…

Pearls: if you’ve got ’em, wear ’em

5 October 2013 9:00 am

‘Women spend more money on their ears in pearl earrings than on any other part of their person.’ So said…

English embroidery: the forgotten wonder of the medieval world

28 September 2013 9:00 am

Think of an art at which the English have excelled and I doubt you would come up with the word…