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Ways of preventing art theft, curating Pop Music, in new V&A series of podcasts
Installation image of From Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s. © V&A

LONDON.- The V&A has launched a series of podcasts revealing the work that goes on behind the scenes of the world’s leading art and design museum. Topics range from the challenges of curating exhibitions about performance, to ways of preventing art theft.

Hosted by the V&A’s Head of Research, Glenn Adamson, each podcast lasts around 20 minutes and offers an in-depth discussion with experts from both inside and outside the Museum. The podcasts are free to download from the V&A’s website and iTunes U. The first three episodes in the series are available now. Thereafter a new podcast will be available every fortnight.

Glenn Adamson said: “There is tremendous interest in what goes on behind the scenes at the V&A. This new series of podcasts will provide insights about our backstage operations – from curating to conservation, education to engineering. It’s a privilege to act as the host for the series, the first of its kind in the world. By launching this series we aim to be the most transparent organisation that we can be, and to let everyone know what goes into making this the greatest museum of art and design in the world.”

Podcasts available from 22 July:
Episode One: Curating Pop Music

Victoria Broackes, from the V&A's Theatre and Performance department, and renowned music critic, Paul Morley discuss the possibilities and challenges of presenting rock and pop music in a museum setting. They examine how to bring alive displays of pop and rock material using multiple technologies as seen in the V&A's hit exhibition David Bowie is, and what the future of curating rock and pop music holds.

Episode Two: Branding the Museum
Damien Whitmore, Director of Public Affairs and Programming at the V&A and Wally Olins, one of the world's leading innovators in brand management demonstrate that brand is more than simply a logo. It is the personality and DNA of an organisation. They explore how the V&A uses its brand across all its activities, from visitor experience to exhibition design, from scholarly research to the offer in the café, and how the core values it represents are the uniting purpose behind everything that the Museum does.

Episode Three: Preventing Art Theft
Vernon Rapley, Head of Security and Visitor Services at the V&A, and Andy Bliss, the top-ranking police officer in London (Chief Constable of the Hertfordshire Constabulary) reveal how museums work with the police to attempt to stop art theft. This includes sharing information on current art theft trends to work towards reducing risk, and in the rare case of a successful theft, recover stolen artefacts for the public.

Future podcasts available in the fortnightly series will cover topics such as:

• building the V&A’s new exhibition galleries, designed by AL_A Architects and opening in 2017 (with Amanda Levete)

• how the V&A works with exhibition designers (with Gary Shelley of Casson Mann Architects)

• curating contemporary fashion (with Brix Smith Start)

• engineering the museum (with Andy Sedgwick of Arup)

• wayfinding graphics which help visitors navigate the V&A’s complex historic site plan (with Holmes Wood Design Consultancy)

• the way historians use the V&A’s collections (with Evelyn Welch, Kings College London, and Giorgio Riello, University of Warwick)

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