A visitor photographs room 48. Differently coloured objects are on display

Room 48

Europe 1900 to the present

Visiting the gallery

Opening times

Closed until further notice.

Gallery audio guides

Available on YouTube Music and Apple Music.

Room 48 examines changing ideas about how objects should look, and the desire to make well-designed objects available to a wider audience.

Many of the objects on display show how designers in the West have drawn inspiration from other cultures, past and present.

Highlights include Continental Art Nouveau, Germany's Darmstadt artists' colony and the Bauhaus, Russian Revolutionary porcelain and American applied arts between the two World Wars.

The Museum is actively collecting objects from the 20th century and the display continues to change as new acquisitions are made.

Take a virtual tour

See how design developed through the last century to now with a selection of household objects in Room 48.

Display case filled with everyday objects including a clock. ©2020 Google©2020 Google


  • Some objects in this collection feature of the British Sign Language guide handset, available from the Audio guide Desk in the Great Court.
  • Some objects in this collection feature on the audio description guide, available from Audio guide Desk in the Great Court.
  • Step-free access. 
  • View sensory map.

Visit Accessibility at the Museum for more information.