Somerset House seeks to be an inspirational creative community where contemporary culture is imagined, created and experienced.
For 250 years, Somerset House has played a central role in our society as a place where our culture and collective understanding of the world is shaped and defined.
In 2000, it began its reinvention as a cultural powerhouse for today, advancing a new generation of creative thinkers who are pushing intellectual and creative boundaries and shifting perceptions of our culture. We celebrate our heritage by looking to the future with renewed social purpose, creating unique and stimulating experiences for the public, bringing them into direct contact with ideas from the greatest artists, makers and thinkers of our time. Located at the geographical heart of London, we are uniquely placed to serve the capital, the country beyond and the wider world.
A registered charity, we operate an independent economic model where commercial and artistic imperatives comfortably co-exist. At Somerset House, art is embedded within a wider community of creative enterprise, creating a pragmatic and viable vision for the arts and cultural centre of the 21st century.
Our vision is to become the UK’s leading centre for contemporary culture, with unexpected ideas and experiences emerging from the intersection of the three groups that constitute our unique cultural ecosystem.
For the public, we seek to be an inspirational place to experience the work of today’s boldest minds, providing intellectual and cultural connections with new ideas and the people behind them. The combination of our celebrated neo-classical setting and our bold, forward-thinking output creates surprising, stimulating and joyful shared experiences for our visitors.
For artists and makers of all disciplines, we seek to encourage experimentation and the creation of new work. We are somewhere for today’s creative generation to take risks, to push boundaries, to collaborate, and go beyond the obvious.
For the wider creative community, we seek to be a home to the largest cluster of creative enterprises in London, a mutually-supportive community ranging from start-ups to established creative businesses, where the best people, ideas and organisations can thrive. – less