Gus Casely-Hayford: Making a Museum

Wednesday 27 October - Thursday 28 October 2021

As the first Director of V&A East, Dr Gus Casely-Hayford OBE offers unique insight into the process of making of London’s major new museum.


SOAS School of Arts is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Gus Casely-Hayford OBE as Professor of Practice, and warmly welcome you to the launch of Making a Museum, a bi-annual series of events through which he will chart for the SOAS community, the creation of London’s major forthcoming museum and research and collections centre, V&A East.

Dr Casely-Hayford was appointed Director of V&A East in March 2020, and is overseeing its development at the former Olympic Park in Stratford, London, with opening scheduled for 2023. In the inaugural event of this series, Gus offers unique insight into the founding of this major cultural institution, exploring the critical, theoretical and practical questions raised by the design and implementation of a new museum.

Dr Casely-Hayford is a curator and cultural historian who has writen, lectured and broadcast widely on culture, presenting a number of series for Sky and BBC radio and television. His former leadership roles include Executive Director of Arts Strategy, Arts Council England, Director of InIVA, and Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in Washington. Gus has served on the boards of cultural institutions including the National Trust and the National Portrait Gallery, and has advised national and international bodies on heritage and culture including the United Nations and the Canadian, Dutch and Norwegian Arts Councils. In 2005 he organised the Africa 05 festival, comprising over 1000 exhibitions and events in over 150 venues across the UK. He holds a PhD in African History from SOAS.

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