News: V&A gets ready to sparkle again as iconic 27ft chandelier is cleaned ahead of the museum reopening

Following 140 days of closure – one of the most significant closures in the V&A’s history – finishing touches are underway across the museum ahead of reopening the doors to visitors this Thursday 6 August 2020.

Final preparations include the cleaning of Dale Chihuly’s iconic 27-foot glass chandelier – made up of 1,300 exquisite blue and green glass elements – that hangs in the museum’s Grand Entrance. The chandelier’s fragility means it can only be cleaned by specialist technicians using a scissor lift, a task conducted twice a year.

Initially opening Thursday to Sunday each week, visitors will able to enjoy all of the V&A’s ground floor collection galleries including the iconic Medieval & Renaissance Gallery, the monumental Cast Courts, the stunning artefacts of The Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art and the much-loved Fashion Gallery, as well as the Europe 1600–1815 galleries on lower-ground floor.

A number of measures will be in place across the V&A to ensure that the museum is a safe, relaxing and inspiring place for visitors, staff and volunteers. Free timed tickets will be introduced to ensure that visitors can freely explore and discover the wonders of the V&A’s collection within a socially distanced environment. Visitors will be required to wear a face covering during their visit, and hand sanitiser stations have been installed throughout the building.

Photo credit: Tristan Fewings

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