Masterpieces in Miniature at DIVA
Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - titel

Masterpieces in Miniature

DIVA

Suikerrui 17-19, Antwerp

05/03/2021 – 15/08/2021

Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - entertainment

DIVA

After jewelery from the 60s and 70s, it is time for the collection of Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert to take over the DIVA museum. This collection is owned by the Victoria and Albert Museum, but now travels the world. The first stop is Antwerp. DIVA is also the only place where you can admire the partridge goblet from the collection. This bird forms a nice pair with the owl cup in the permanent collection. So don’t just visit this temporary exhibition, but also take a look at the permanent DIVA collection.

Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - Arthur Gilbert

Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert

When you enter the exhibition, you immediately come face to face with Arthur Gilbert (1913 – 2001). The story goes that Arthur met his future wife Rosalinde in a wax museum. They made a fortune in fashion in the 1930s. Meanwhile, Arthur took over his wife’s last name. His original last name was Bernstein, but everywhere he was referred to as Mr. Gilbert.

In 1945 the couple retired and went to California. They remained active in the real estate market, so they made even more money. Arthur and Rosalinde searched for objects for their home and passionately began to collect. They built one of the most complete private collections of ornamental objects.

Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - Italiaanse micromozaïek

Micro Mosaic

Arthur bought two paintings in 1969 with, what he thought were, cracks. In reality it was not a painting, but a mosaic with tiny pieces of colored glass. They were made (especially) in Italy in the middle of the 19th century, when people started to travel more and more.

I have to say that I’ve never seen this before. Of course I know a mosaic, but such a fine version was surprising. As the picture above shows, you can barely see it. The hats of the males are made from different pieces of glass! So be sure to take a look and find out for yourself.

Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - zilveren poort

Silver and gold

After section with micro mosaics, you are welcomed by a high solid silver (!) Gate. It was once a gate in front of the Cathedral of the Nativity of the Mother of God in Kiev. Arthur bought them when the Gilberts were at the start of their collection. Rosalinde was not happy with it, Arthur had to keep them in the garage.

Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - feestelijk zilver

Receive guests in style

For me, the most impressive part of the entire exhibition was this one. In the center is an impressive candlestick weighing 38 kilos. The Gilberts seem to like parties. With such a candlestick and a wine cooler, big enough to bathe a child in, you have pieces that everyone will talk about for years.

Masterpieces in Miniature - DIVA Antwerpen - snuifdoos uit collectie Frederik de Grote

Snuffboxes

Arthur and Rosalinde Gilbert had one of the largest collections of snuff boxes. There is a snuff box that was once owned by Nathaniel Dimsdale. Nathaniel pioneered in vaccination together with his father Thomas. The snuff box was given as a gift after Thomas vaccinated the Russian imperial family. Maybe an idea for King Filip?

Masterpieces in Miniature

 

DIVA

Antwerp, Suikerrui 17-19

05/03/2021 – 15/08/2021

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