Decorative Arts

Please note, the Decorative Arts gallery will be temporarily closed as the museum manages the flow of visitors in line with Covid-19 guidelines. Apologies for the inconvenience. Check back here for details on when the gallery will re-open.

In this gallery you can discover two hundred years of design history in ceramics, furniture, decorative tiles, sculpture, illustrations and glass. With rare examples of lustre glazing, intricately moulded porcelain, detailed embroidery, hand-painted furniture and ornate marquetry, the pieces on display are some of the finest examples in Britain.

Significant periods in British design are represented, including the Gothic Revival, the Arts and Crafts Movement, the Bloomsbury Group and studio pottery. The artists, designers and craft makers featured include: Vanessa Bell, Dora Carrington, Hans Coper, William De Morgan, Christopher Dresser, Duncan Grant, Owen Jones, Bernard Leech, Wyndham Lewis, AWN Pugin and Lucie Rie.

Influential British manufacturers also feature and include pieces by Maw & Co, Martin Brothers, Minton, Pilkington, Royal Doulton and Wedgwood. There is also a small selection of 17th century drinking glasses, each with different stem designs.

Portsmouth Museum and Art Gallery also holds 63 pieces of ceramics and decorative art objects from the Handley-Read collection. Find out more here.