Art in the United Kingdom

We admit it, we are anglophiles. From Lincoln Cathedral to Sir Christopher Wren to the Young British Artists.

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Lacquer pen-case, signed by the artist Ashraf ibn Riza
Lacquer pen-case, signed by the artist Ashraf ibn Riza

This luxury pen-case is made from papier mâché with lacquer painting, a tradition inspired by Chinese lacquer.

Buddha preaching at Vulture Peak embroidery
Buddha preaching at Vulture Peak embroidery

This embroidery, discovered at Dunhuang, dates from China’s Tang dynasty (618–907) and depicts the Buddha preaching at Vulture Peak – in Buddhist tradition a favorite retreat of the Buddha and his disciples.

John Everett Millais, <em>Bubbles</em>
John Everett Millais, Bubbles

Victorian art is often dismissed as an overly sentimental and cutesy style of painting, and nowhere are these qualities more apparent than in Bubbles.

Annie Leibovitz, <em>Queen Elizabeth II</em>
Annie Leibovitz, Queen Elizabeth II

This picture was taken to commemorate Queen Elizabeth II’s official state visit to the United States in 2007.

William Holman Hunt, <em>The Shadow of Death</em>
William Holman Hunt, The Shadow of Death

The Shadow of Death is an inspired representation of a youthful Christ who cannot escape his destiny.

Horst P. Horst, <em>Mainbocher Corset, Paris</em>
Horst P. Horst, Mainbocher Corset, Paris

Horst's Mainbocher Corset photograph journeyed across oceans and time to 50 later transform Vogue into a concept and a verb.

A silk painting of sacred Buddhist images from Dunhuang
A silk painting of sacred Buddhist images from Dunhuang

A fragmentary silk painting tells us about Buddhist art along the Silk Roads, numerous Buddhist sacred icons, and the complex life of an object after its creation.

Head of the Buddha, Gandhara
Head of the Buddha, Gandhara

Positioned at the crossroads of Asia, Gandhara has always been an ancient transit zone—as we see in this sculpture of the Buddha

A Portrait of Humanity: The Compelling Story of Ayuba Suleiman Diallo
A Portrait of Humanity: The Compelling Story of Ayuba Suleiman Diallo

The life of Ayuba Suleiman Diallo, from modern-day Senegal, reveals some of the startling and uncomfortable truths behind the historic slave trade.

Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

Spiral columns, carved zig-zags, round arches—at Durham, the rhythmic Anglo-Norman Romanesque pulses with life.

Conserving the Wolsey Angels
Conserving the Wolsey Angels

After their recent rediscovery, the Wolsey Angels go through extensive conservation and preservation after being exposed to the elements on the gateposts of a stately home in England, perhaps for centuries

Conserving Jacob van Walscapelle’s <i>Flowers in a Glass Vase</i>
Conserving Jacob van Walscapelle’s Flowers in a Glass Vase

The earliest known signed work by Jacob van Walscapelle undergoes thorough conservation work at the V&A, including reattaching paint flakes, removing discoloured varnish, and applying new varnish