The Victoria and Albert Museum

18 November 2011 to 15 April 2012

The Victoria & Albert Museum in London is the world's leading museum of art and design and has been a near-inexhaustible source of inspiration, innovation and knowledge since its foundation in the mid-19th century. The exhibition traces the history of this fascinating and hugely influential museum.

The museum was founded in the wake of the Great Exhibition of All Nations of 1851 which presented the British Empire as the most advanced industrial nation. In 1857, following the phenomenal success of this pioneering universal exhibition, Queen Victoria opened the South Kensington Museum, the forerunner of today's Victoria and Albert Museum and the prototype of present-day museological displays. From day one, the museum was celebrated as an exemplary educational institution that reached an unusually wide audience. Not only did its collections help improve the aesthetic quality of British manufactures and industrial products, they also provided models to be emulated and acted as a school of public taste.
The exhibition Art and Design for All reconstructs the focus of the original core collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum and sheds light on its innovative approach and its function as a role model for other institutions. The exhibition also presents the results of recent research into the continental roots of the V&A, which can be traced back to the ideas of Queen Victoria's German husband, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a graduate of the University of Bonn, and the museum landscape of 19th-century Germany. Shown only in Bonn, the exhibition continues the Art and Exhibition Hall's successful series of presentations devoted to the world's great collections. Art and Design for All showcases some 400 spectacular items from the rich holdings of the V&A, which is lending on this scale for the first time in its history. The exhibits are complemented by 100 exquisite pieces from the Royal Collection, the Berlin Kunstgewerbemuseum and the Museum of Applied Arts in Budapest.

The exhibition is held under the patronage of HRH The Prince of Wales.

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  1. Image from ExhibitionPhoto: David Ertl © Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland GmbH

Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland

Museumsmeile Bonn
Friedrich-Ebert-Allee 4
53113 Bonn
T +49 228 9171–200

Opening hours

Mondays closed
Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 10 a.m.–9 p.m.
Thursdays–Sundays, 10 a.m.–7 p.m.
(including public holidays even those which fall on Mondays)

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