V&A Exhibition Road Quarter celebrates its first birthday

Amanda Levete Hay 2020

Looking back at an extraordinary first twelve months

June 29 2018

The V&A Exhibition Road Quarter is celebrating its first birthday.

Since its official opening by HRH The Duchess of Cambridge on 29 June 2017 and first welcoming the public a day later, the Exhibition Road Quarter has become one of the most loved new destinations in London, transforming Exhibition Road and the experience of the V&A.

Since 1 July 2017, over one and a half million visitors to the V&A have entered via the new V&A Exhibition Road Quarter.

In September 2017, the V&A announced record breaking visitor numbers, with over half now entering via the Exhibition Road Quarter entrance. The Art Newspaper commented: ‘Thanks to the extension, the museum has had its best two months since its opening in 1857, attracting 837,000 visitors in July and August, compared with 459,000 in the same period last year’.

The Sackler Courtyard has become the new civic space for London and hosted a full calendar of performances and events as well as being appropriated by the public.

The first exhibition in the Sainsbury Gallery, “Opera: Passion, Power and Politics” (September 2017 – February 2018) gained wide acclaim, with the headline exhibition “The Future Starts Here” now open to the public until 4 November.

In the last twelve months, the project has been awarded Building of the Year at the RIBA London Awards, Cultural Project of the Year at the AJ Awards, the Judges’ Inspiration Award at the ICE London Civil Engineering Awards 2018, and this week received a RIBA National Award 2018.

Images: V&A; Hufton + Crow; AL_A; Rick Pushinsky