TALL AND SMALL

2011: Exhibition of miniature silver at Museum Bredius

From October 11th 2011 to January 15th 2012 the exhibition Tall and Small can be visited in Museum Bredius. For the first time antique Dutch miniature silver will be on display next to the life-size silver objects from which they were copied. Hundreds of miniatures from the collection of Museum Bredius and The Hague antique dealer and jeweller A. Aardewerk will be complemented with loans from international private collections.

The more than 80 pieces of miniature silver in the Bredius collection gave rise to this exhibition. In the second half of the 17th century miniature silver became the fashion in the Netherlands. Well-to-do ladies, especially in Amsterdam, decorated cabinets as doll’s houses, which were subsequently furnished with miniature silver. This was an expensive hobby, as the miniatures were made of the same materials as the coins in those days. Doll’s houses turned into status symbols and became all the rage in the 18th century. Miniature silver was in demand in Amsterdam so much that generations of silver smiths specialised in making this ‘poppegoet’ (doll’s stuff), as miniature silver was referred to in those days.

Apart from furniture also a number of crafts, sports and means of transport are exhibited in miniature silver. Several very rare pieces are a sundial, a four poster, a billiard table and even a merry-go-round.