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Author Topic:   Gilbert Collection
Scott Martin
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Posts: 11520
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 11-07-2006 03:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Gilbert Collection
Gold & Treasury - Introduction

    The Gilbert Collection treasury contains fabulous objects made for kings, queens, emperors and maharajas.

The gold and treasury galleries of the Gilbert Collection contain a dazzling display of rarities. Although many of the items conform to a recognizable shape and seem to have had a practical use, they were often made purely for display and, as a result, remain in pristine condition.

Some objects in the collection were specially made for a treasury or display room; a 16th century jeweled mother of pearl partridge and a nef from Regensburg were deliberately made as confections, or as a way of displaying natural curiosities of exceptional beauty or rarity. While other items of a supposedly practical nature are no less decorative; two pairs of massive silver gates are testimony to the power of the Russian Orthodox Church under the Tzars, while a pair of howdahs (chairs for riding elephants) evoke equally strong impressions of British Imperial rule in India.

While most of the collection dates from the 16th to the 19th centuries, a few items are extraordinary early survivors, notably, an Anatolian gold ewer from the third millennium BC. A distinctive feature of the collection is its focus on fine craftsmanship and it is much richer in ornamental objects than in utilitarian wares.

The Silver Gallery

    Attribution: unknown
    Origin: Genoa, Italy
    Date: 1777
    Materials: silver
    Dimensions: height: each, 29.4 cm; width across handles

Silver has a special magic for those who appreciate great history as well as great craftsmanship and there are few better places to admire it than the 40 meter-long silver gallery at the Gilbert Collection.

This contains a fabulous examples of European silver and silver-gilt* and features works by the greatest craftsmen of their time, in particular Paul de Lamerie and Paul Storr, who both worked in London during the eighteenth century. Their silver creates a glittering picture of the changing fashions of the time and can be admired alongside the very different styles of the European silversmiths of French, German and Italian origin whose work is also featured here.

The 300 pieces on display include objects of curiosity as well as those of great beauty. From the humble earthenware pot, cracked and secured with silver straps, to the exquisite royal plate, the subject of a bitter argument between kings and queens, the sheer variety of objects to be found in the Gilbert Collection is as extraordinary as their quality.

Be sure to visit the Gilbert Collection site for more interesting silver/gold.

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iconnumber posted 11-13-2006 06:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ahwt     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Gilbert Collection of Gold and Silver by Timothy B. Schroder was published by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art 1988. This 688 page book has been on the reminder table for some time, but it is still available via the internet.

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