5 Kids-Friendly Art Galleries in London You Need to Meet – Did you know that there are lots of amazing art workshops for kids in London? It’s a great way to get your kids into art. London, in particular, is a wonderful place to introduce your children to a wide range of art and artists – there are so many fantastic art galleries and museums in the UK capital, many of which are free. Children are more likely to engage with what they’re seeing if they can take part in some way and in all the places on my list, children are actively encouraged to get involved by doing art workshops, going on a family trail or listening to stories about the art.
The National Gallery
The National Gallery houses the national collection of paintings in the Western European tradition from the 13th to the 19th centuries. It is on show 361 days a year, free of charge. The Gallery’s aim is to care for the collection, to enhance it for future generations, primarily by acquisition, and to study it, while encouraging access to the pictures for the education and enjoyment of the widest possible public now and in the future.
Victoria and Albert Museum
The V&A is the world’s leading museum of art and design, housing a permanent collection of over 2.3 million objects that span over 5,000 years of human creativity. The Museum holds many of the UK’s national collections and houses some of the greatest resources for the study of architecture, furniture, fashion, textiles, photography, sculpture, painting, jewellery, glass, ceramics, book arts, Asian art and design, theatre and performance.
When Tate first opened its doors to the public in 1897 it had just one site, displaying a small collection of British artworks. Today we have four major sites and the national collection of British art from 1500 to the present day and international modern and contemporary art, which includes nearly 70,000 artworks.
Dulwich Picture Gallery
Dulwich Picture Gallery is the world’s first purpose-built public art gallery: it was founded in 1811 when Sir Francis Bourgeois RA bequeathed his collection of old masters “for the inspection of the public”. Today the Gallery is a vibrant cultural hub hosting some of the UK’s leading exhibitions alongside its Permanent Collection of Baroque masterpieces while staging a wide-ranging programme of public events, practical art and community engagement.
Royal Academy of Arts
The RA was founded in 1768 by a group of 40 artists and architects who became the first Royal Academicians. The first president was Sir Joshua Reynolds, whose statue now stands outside Burlington House. Over the past 250 years, The RA moved house several times, elected hundreds of new RAs and even survived the Blitz – all while continuing to stage an annual Summer Exhibition, elect new members and champion art and architecture in all its forms.
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