Exhibition: Filthy Lucre: Whistler's Peacock Room re-imagined

This exhibition runs from Sat, 25th Jan 2020 to Sun, 3rd May 2020. See all dates

This event runs over several days/weeks. Dates include:

25th Jan 2020  
(10am - 5:45pm)  <– Today
26th Jan 2020  
(10am - 5:45pm)
27th Jan 2020  
(10am - 5:45pm)
28th Jan 2020  
(10am - 5:45pm)
29th Jan 2020  
(10am - 5:45pm)
30th Jan 2020  
(10am - 5:45pm)
31st Jan 2020  
(10am - 10pm)

This exhibition has not opened yet. Will open on Sat, 25th Jan 2020

Cost: Free of Charge

Filthy Lucre is an immersive installation by contemporary American artist Darren Waterston, presenting a detailed reimagining of James Abbott McNeill Whistler’s famed Peacock Room – the sumptuous 19th-century dining room once housed just a stone’s throw away from the V&A and now installed at the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Waterston has faithfully recreated each of the room’s individual elements with a twist, with the installation revealing a magnificent ruin crumbling under the weight of material decadence and the egos of those involved in its creation.

On display for the first time in UK, the installation is inspired by the tension between art and money, ego and patronage. The design of the original interior famously saw Whistler create the space without the knowledge of his commissioner.

Initially invited by his friend and patron, Frederick Leyland, to consult on the room’s colour scheme, Whistler proceeded to redesign the entire room whilst Leyland was away from London. Fuelled by their clashing personalities, the argument was splashed across London’s society tabloids, turning the once great friends into enemies.

Replicating almost every detail of Whistler’s masterpiece, Waterston transforms the room into an uneasy experience of destruction and twisted excess, drawing parallels between the economic inequality of the Victorian era and today. Created through extensive collaboration, Filthy Lucre demonstrates master craftsmanship to reimagine the luxurious wood panelling, ornate lighting pendants and stunning ceramics collection, as well as decorative wall art and a captivating central portrait that draws viewers into the room.

A soundscape by New York-based rockers BETTY also enhances the installation experience, filling the space with muffled gossiping voices and a mournful cello.

Contact and Booking Details

More information at this website.

No need to book tickets - just turn up on the day.


Victoria and Albert Museum,

Cromwell Road, London,

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