Martin Roth, 61, oversaw the active development of the museum's acquisition policy as part of an overall expansion plan. Under his leadership the museum experienced a period rising visitor numbers, record-breaking exhibitions and the institute’s receipt of the 2016 Museum of the Year prize.
“It’s been an enormous privilege and tremendously exciting to lead this great museum,” Roth said. “I’m proud to have steered it to new successes and a period of growth and expansion.”
Under Roth’s direction, the museum reopened its Europe 1600-1815 galleries. For these galleries the V&A acquired such objects as: printed designs for the Louis-XIV-style Het Loo Palace in the Netherlands from 1689; a medal cabinet from the circle of Napoleon; and a Lucio de Lucci table from late 17th century Venice.
Roth’s decision to step down is believed to be linked to the recent Brexit vote. He told German broadcaster Deutsche Welle that “for me, Europe always gave hope for a peaceful future based on sharing, solidarity and tolerance,” prior to the UK vote.
The museum is expected to advertise the directorship vacancy shortly.