Painted by Raphael between 1515-16, the Raphael Cartoons are among the greatest treasures of the Renaissance in the UK. Lent to the V&A from the Royal Collection by Her Majesty The Queen, they have been on display since 1865. To mark the 500th anniversary of Raphael’s death in 2020, the V&A embarked on a landmark project to refurbish the Raphael Court and enhance the understanding and enjoyment of these iconic works for new and existing audiences.

The V&A is incredibly grateful to the Commission for making a Special Award towards the project, which enabled the team to collaborate with Factum Foundation and create an extensive new series of photographs of the Cartoons using cutting-edge technology. In August 2019 high-resolution photographs, infrared images and 3D scans of all seven of the Cartoons' surfaces were captured. These images and the resulting research will be available to the public in the gallery and online, allowing audiences to better see the extraordinary details within the works and explore the complex process of the Cartoons’ creation.

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Recording the colour of the Raphael Cartoons at theV&A using panoramic composite photography. © Gabriel Scarpa for Factum Foundation

VA Recording the colour of the Raphael Cartoons panoramic composite photography c Gabriel Scarpa for FF