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Art and artists | Royal Academy of Arts

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Art and artists

For 250 years, we have been run by leading artists and architects, and nurturing the next generation in the RA Schools. Our Collection tells their story. Explore it online here.

    • Our art and artists online

      We’ve recently restructured how we present our artists and Collection online and we’d love to know what you think.

      We’ve redesigned our search, our artist pages and our pages for paintings, sculptures, artists’ letters and books and brought these into the heart of the RA website. You’ll now see the Collection popping up all across the site. You’ll also find bigger images and these are available to download wherever possible on a Creative Commons licence.

      Email us your feedback

    • Your search starts here

      You can search across the RA Collection, including our archive and library. Try searching for an artwork, or looking for a colour, medium or technique. You can also discover all of the artists (Royal Academicians) who have run the Academy since its foundation in 1768 to the present day.

      If you’re looking for something more specific, you can search just our artworks, books, archive or names (artists, people or organisations associated with our Collection).

      Search the Collection

    • Want a more visual way in?

      Not every journey starts with a search. We’ve made it easy to explore our collection by using data to draw connections between different artists, media, moods or colours. Start your exploration anywhere and see where you end up.

      Start exploring

  • The Royal Academy and the great public collections are not just art galleries. They are huge repositories of free speech and free thinking.

    Bob and Roberta Smith RA


    • Our Collection

      Ever since the Royal Academy was founded in 1768, we’ve been collecting artworks, books and artistic materials. Every artist and architect that’s been elected to join us as a Royal Academician has donated an example of their work, known as a Diploma Work, to our Collection.

      Our Collection spans 250 years of British art, from Constable and Turner to Hockney and Emin. It now contains about 935 paintings, 350 sculptures, 700 plaster casts, 25,000 prints and drawings and 5,000 historic photographs. Some were acquired as teaching materials for the RA Schools, or simply to inspire the next generation of artists.

      You’ll find works from our Collection on display in new public galleries throughout the RA.

    • The Royal Academy Collection Gallery

      Photo: Rory Mulvey

      Free displays of art and architecture

      Now open

      Throughout the new RA you’ll find free displays of art and architecture. Our three-part series on The Making of an Artist explores how previous generations of artists learnt about architecture, learnt to draw and took inspiration from great artworks by past masters.

      In the Architecture Studio, audiences are invited to engage with innovative and critical ideas on architecture, visual arts and contemporary culture, while the Weston Studio provides the RA Schools with its own space for public projects.

      See all displays