A Free Taylor Swift Exhibition Is Coming To The V&A This Month

By Olivia Emily

3 weeks ago

Taylor may have left, but Swiftie fever is still rife across the UK


A new, temporary Taylor Swift exhibition is coming to London’s Victoria & Albert Museum at the end of this month. Called Taylor Swift: Songbook Trail, the collection will include an array of the world-famous singer’s personal items, from cowboy boots to music awards. Here’s everything you need to know before you go.

A Swiftie’s Guide To London

The V&A

The V&A (Getty Images)

Taylor Swift: Songbook Trail: Inside The V&A’s Upcoming Exhibition

Whether you were among one of the many celebrities in attendance at Taylor Swift’s first Wembley Stadium leg of The Eras Tour or you’re impatiently waiting for her return to London in August, you won’t want to miss this: a free-to-visit Swift collection at the V&A.

Taylor Swift: Songbook Trail will welcome fans to the storied museum to see an array of Swift’s personal items up close, exploring everything from her childhood to her recording legacy. It’s the first time many of these items have ever been on display, with 16 looks worn by the 14-time Grammy winner sitting alongside instruments, storyboards, music awards and archive material.

Grammy-award winning Swift recently made a splash in the UK on her blockbuster Eras Tour, performing for huge crowds in Edinburgh, Cardiff, London and Liverpool, with the latter renaming itself Taylor Town in honour of her arrival.

The free trail has been curated to celebrate the mammoth success of The Eras Tour, celebrating Swift’s ultra-creative costumes, lyrics and music videos. A pop icon and global phenomenon, Taylor Swift: Songbook Trail will also explore the artist’s ground-breaking impact and the phenomenon of the ‘Swiftie’ fandom.

The news follows the V&A advertising a job opening for a Swiftie expert earlier this year. Known as a ‘Superfan Advisor’, is the Songbook Trail the first fruits of whoever snagged the in-demand role?

‘We are delighted to be able to display a range of iconic looks worn by Taylor Swift at the V&A this summer – each celebrating a chapter in the artist’s musical journey,’ says Kate Bailey, the V&A’s senior curator across theatre and performance. ‘Taylor Swift’s songs – like objects – tell stories, often drawing from art, history and literature. We hope this theatrical trail across the museum will inspire curious visitors to discover more about the performer, her creativity and V&A objects.’

A still from Taylor Swift's 'Willow' music video

A still from Taylor Swift’s ‘Willow’ music video. © TAS Rights Management, LLC

What’s On Display?

Split into 13 stops (Taylor’s lucky number), Taylor Swift: Songbook Trail fittingly follows a winding trail of key ‘eras’ in Swift’s life through the V&A’s permanent galleries, showcasing the chapters of her music career and spotlighting key milestones, including her move to Nashville aged 14. Key items fans can see include the cowboy boots Swift wore during 2007’s Soul2Soul II Tour where she opened for Tim McGraw and Faith Hill, and the black ruffled dress Swift wears in the ‘Fortnight’ music video.

Each installation has been designed by award-winning designer Tom Piper, best known for working with the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Tower of London, and on the previous V&A exhibition, Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser.

Where?

Across the permanent galleries at the V&A South Kensington (Cromwell Rd, London SW7 2RL). A digital map of the trail will be available for visitors.

When?

Taylor Swift: Songbook Trail runs 27 July–8 September 2024. The V&A is open everyday from 10am–5.45pm.

Do You Need A Ticket?

No ticket needed. Find more information about visiting at vam.ac.uk