top of page

A for Art: London in Alphabetical Order.


Me in the Victoria & Albert Museum

Welcome to the ‘London in Alphabetical Order’ series – where I share my insights about some of the most exciting things about London as someone who spent the better part of her youth there. This article is my personal opinion and by no means definitive or exhaustive.


London is well-known for its vibrant and diverse art scene, which might seem daunting to the average traveler.


Fear not, here is your guide on which art museum/gallery to visit:


Must-visit: The National Gallery

The National Gallery. Source: The National Gallery

Well-situated in central London, The National Gallery houses one of the world’s greatest collection of masterpieces – think Van Gogh’s Sunflower, Monet’s Waterlily Pond, Botticelli’s Venus and Mars, among many others. The best part, it’s FREE! Simply drop by to marvel at the impressive architecture and amazing artworks at your leisure. Be it your first or n-th time at this Gallery, there will always be something to enjoy!


Tips:


  • The Gallery has a map and list of highlight available. You should stick to the highlights if you are tight on time.

  • The Impressionist Room tends to be the busiest so, to avoid the crowd, it is recommended to come early and start there.


For Modern & Contemporary Art: Tate Modern


Tate Modern (Source: TimeOut)

Personally, I would consider this a must-visit, even if you are not a big fan of modern and contemporary art, for several reasons:

  1. FREE TO VISIT (like most museums in London). However, you’ll need tickets for special exhibitions like the Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirror Room.

  2. Home to over 100 years of art (from the 1990s to now), with famous works by Picasso, Matisse, Warhol, Pollock, etc.

  3. Fun and stimulating! Expect lots of (baffling?) installations that will excite you, with many interactive activities.

  4. Location, location, location! If I were to pick the best location in all of London, it would be here! The Tate Modern is right by the Thames and directly opposite St. Paul’s Cathedral, connected by Millennium Bridge. Go up the highest floor to enjoy one of the best views of London!

  5. The building - an old power station revitalized to become a public art space. In my opinion, this is a much-appreciated nod to London's industrial past.


For sculptures, architecture and design: Victoria & Albert Museum


Victoria & Albert Museum (Source: V&A)

If you plan to explore the Kensington area, don’t miss out on the Victoria & Albert Museum – the world’s largest museum of applied arts, decorative arts and design, with a permanent collection of over 2.27 million objects.


Besides the works on display, the building itself merits a visit – showcasing the best of British architecture from the Victorian to post-war period. My personal favorite spot to hang out is the garden in the middle of the Museum – where you can relax and pretend to be a Bridgerton character…


Again, FREE to visit but you will have to buy tickets for special exhibitions. They tend to have a lot of interesting design exhibitions on.


Tip: Don’t miss out on the Natural History Museum right next door! Another architectural marvel and home to an amazing natural science collection.


For British art: Tate Britain


Tate Britain (Source: TripAdvisor)

I would classify this museum as a destination for the above-average art lover. The building itself is not interesting and the location is somewhat out of the way from major tourist attractions. However, if you want to learn about British art and have some spare time on your hands, definitely check this out!


The Tate Britain houses British art from the 1500s to present day and is home to the world’s largest collection of British art. My personal favorite is the J.M.W Turner’s room.


Tip: The building is located near the Thames in an area with some amazing red-brick buildings – the perfect location for a tourist-free photoshoot!


For the experienced art lover: Royal Academy of Arts London


Royal Academy of Arts London (Source: Sotheby's)

So you’ve been to all those famous museums and are looking for something a little more special? I would recommend checking out the RA – located right in the heart of the City (near Picadilly Circus and Regent Street).


The RA holds free and special exhibitions, featuring both famous and newer, lesser-known artworks. You can see what’s on on their website to plan accordingly. Otherwise, it is perfectly fine to just drop in and treat yourself to an artistic surprise. These exhibitions won’t take up much time on your travel agenda.


For the avant-garde art lover: Special exhibitions across the City!


180 The Strand (Source: 180 The Strand)

Honestly, art is everywhere in London and there are always some cool exhibitions happening somewhere in the City. If you don’t mind going a little further out or you love having your mind boggled by contemporary art installations, I would recommend looking at TimeOut London to see what’s happening.


Otherwise, just drop by 180 The Strand (near King’s College London) to see if there’s any exhibition happening. Though these exhibitions are short, the queue can be long. Thus, expect some waiting time for some of the most unique art experiences of your life!




34 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


Log In to Connect With Members
View and follow other members, leave comments & more.
bottom of page