Hollywood Costume at the V&A Museum


Hollywood Costume Exhibition at Victoria and Albert Museum London

See the iconic Dorothy costume from “The Wizard of Oz” at the V&A in London. MGM/ The Kobal Collection

“Cinematic icons are born when the audience falls deeply in love with the people in the story. And that’s what movies, and costume design, is all about.”


The images of our beloved movie icons stay with us long after the film credits end or after we’ve watched that favourite DVD for the umpteenth time. They stick with us because they speak to us – the characters, the story, the romance or the thrill of action or mystery. The costumes actors wear are an integral part of how they transform into the characters that we fall in love with in the theaters. This autumn the Victoria & Albert Museum is presenting the much anticipated exhibition Hollywood Costume from October 20th, 2012 to January 27th, 2013. If you’re a film lover, this a blockbuster show not to be missed!

The Hollywood Costume exhibition at the V&A will bring together over 100 costumes from the most iconic characters celebrating a century of Hollywood filmmaking magic from 1912-2012. On display will be costumes and cinema memorabilia as well as interviews specially created for this landmark exhibition. It’s worth booking that ticket and coming to London this autumn or winter to see this show, which brings together many costumes that have never been publicly displayed before. Here’s your chance to get a rare glimpse inside movie studio archives and relive some of your favourite movie moments!

V&A Hollywood Costume Exhibition

Get a close up look at Johnny Depp’s costume as Jack Sparrow in the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End’ film from 2007. Walt Disney Pictures/The Kobal Collection

Hollywood Costume is cleverly presented in three acts highlighting the process of how costume designers work their magic to bring a character from script to the big screen. Act 1: Deconstruction is dedicated to this inventive process and uses case studies to show museum visitors how characters are brought to life and made authentic through the costume designer’s hard work, research and creativity.

Act 2: Dialogue looks at the collaboration between some of Hollywood’s greatest filmmakers and their costume designers. Specially commissioned interviews bring this creative fusion to life and tell the stories behind some of Hollywood’s most successful artistic collaborations. Learn more about how actors transform into characters with the case studies dedicated to Meryl Streep and Robert De Niro that look at the role of costume in some of their most iconic films.

Victoria and Albert Museum Hollywood Costume Exhibition London

Kate Winslett’s beautiful costume from the 1997 blockbuster “Titanic.” 20th Century Fox/Paramount/The Kobal Collection

Act 3: Finale is the dream gallery for movie lovers! Here you’ll see the glamourous costumes worn by some of Hollywood’s most famous actresses, including Marilyn Monroe in “Some Like it Hot,” Renee Zellwiger in “Chicago,” Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” and many more. A grand finale for an unforgettable exhibition celebrating Hollywood costume design!

If you haven’t discovered the outstanding collections at the Victoria & Albert Museum, this special exhibition is the perfect time to visit. The V&A is located in South Kensington’s Museum Row, along with its neighbours the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. It’s just a short stroll south from Kensington Gardens and the Royal Albert Memorial.

Visit the V&A Museum in London

The soaring entrance to the V&A in South Kensington

The V&A has free entrance to see the finest collection of decorative art in the world, which is such a lovely treat! (Although you will have to pay for special exhibitions like Hollywood Costume.) One of the charms of staying in the South Kensington neighborhood is that you can pop in and explore the collections at your own pace instead of trying to see everything on one visit. Stop in one evening to see the popular Jewelry galleries or take a walk down the beautiful galleries filled with the most exquisite silver and gold objects. Or step out into the courtyard at the museum and enjoy a bit of relaxation in a beautiful setting. There’s even a Garden Cafe where you can get something refreshing to enjoy outdoors.

The Courtyard of the V&A Museum South Kensington London

Enjoy a break and rest your feet in the courtyard of the V&A

If you’re looking for a great spot to stay near the V&A in South Kensington, we have a lovely selection of London vacation rentals nearby. Our charming Cornwall is a one bedroom apartment with a lovely patio garden just a short stroll from Museum Row.

Hollywood Costume Exhibition Tickets & Opening Times

While entrance to the V&A is free, you will have to pay for the timed ticket to see this special exhibition. Hollywood Costume tickets can be booked online in advance, which we highly recommend since this will be a popular show!

20 October 2012–27 January 2013: Daily 10.00–17.30
The V&A is open late every Friday  from 10.00–21.30 (last Hollywood Costume ticket sold 20.45, last entry 21.00)

For more information, visit the V&A Hollywood Costume website.

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