Perpetuating the memory of one of the greatest men of the Victorian age

KELMSCOTT LECTURE 2019 William Morris: South Kensington & Socialism

October 8, 2019 19.00 at The V&A (Hochhauser auditorium)

‘I do not want art for a few, any more than education for a few, or freedom for a few’. So said William Morris, a great champion of the Arts and Crafts Movement and a key figure in British socialism at the end of the 19th century. Morris’s belief in equality of access to the arts made him a great friend to the South Kensington Museum (later renamed the V&A). Today, he remains one of the most famous names in the V&A collection. Morris had an important influence on some of the museum’s earliest collecting policies, but as an artist he was also inspired by its collections. His legacy can still be found all over the V&A, not only in its extensive collections of Morris’s work, but also in the very fabric of the building which Morris helped to design. In this lecture, V&A Director Dr Tristram Hunt traces the history of Morris’s engagement with the V&A, exploring how the museum helped to shape both his artistic endeavours and his political beliefs.

Please note this event takes place in the Hochhauser auditorium at the V&A. Attendees should use the Exhibition Road entrance which is open from 18.30.

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