The Art Fund, an organisation that has charged itself with advancing knowledge and availability of art, is working very hard at encouraging people to visit London and see its amazing art works. To achieve this, they have recently released a new list of the best museums to visit in London. The British Museum and the Victoria and Albert top the list.
There are numerous museums in London, making it a Mecca for art lovers. The Art Fund, an organization that aims to highlight the availability of art across the United Kingdom, has released new information on some of the best museums to visit in London. This is part of their Art Map initiative, which enables people to find works of art and museums near them through an interactive map. The map is available through https://www.artfund.org/what-to-see/art-map.
In first place, the Art Fund has ranked the British Museum, one of the oldest in the world. Only a fraction of its collection can be on display, as they have millions of objects available. Some permanent exhibitions include the Rosetta Stone and the mummy display.
The Victoria & Albert (V&A) museum is the second most important London museum, where a huge variety of different forms of art is on display. This ranges from photography to ceramics. The 1500-1900 British Galleries are of particular importance, chronologically demonstrating the history of British monarchy.
Then, there is the Natural History Museum, found in the Alfred Waterhouse building. Around 70 million different mineral, rock, fossil, animal, and plant specimen are on display. It also contains animal life displays, although Dippy the Diplodocus is currently on loan to a different museum.
Fourth on the list is the Science Museum, where people can enjoy seven floors of exhibitions, including the Wellcome Wing, the Apollo 10 command module, and the Medical History Gallery.
The National Gallery also receives a mention. This museum was found in 1824, when it housed just 36 paintings. Today, the collection has increased to over 2,000 works of art, coming from almost every school of art in Europe. The Sainsbury Wing holds works by Piero della Francesca and Giotto, some of the greatest early Italian masters.
The sixth museum is the famous Tate Modern, perhaps the world’s most famous museum of modern art. Even the architecture of the building is a work of art in itself. Once inside, people can visit huge temporary installation, including the cavernous turbine hall. The Tate also houses permanent collections, which includes works by Beuys, Twombly, Bacon, Rothko, and Matisse.
The National Maritime Museum also makes the list, which, together with the Royal Observatory and the Queen’s House was founded by Charles II in 1675. Permanent exhibitions demonstrate the history of London’s maritime heritage. It even includes Nelson’s Column and wreckage from a Zeppelin that was shot down in 1916 over the Thames.
The last museum making the list is the Imperial War Museum, which is found in what used to be the Bethlem Royal Hospital for the insane, from which we get the expression “bedlam”. It holds works of art that were mainly commissioned during the First and Second World War, but also pieces of war literature manuscripts, official communications, war machines, and personal artefacts, all showcasing the conflicts experienced in the 20th century.
A representative from the Art Fund says: “London truly is one of the most amazing cities in the world for art lovers. We struggled very hard to pick our eight favourites, because there are so many more and we don’t want people to think they are any less special or important. Hopefully, people will feel their lives are enriched by visiting these eight, however.”