Exhibition News

Tiaras with a Twist

story illustration
Published Wednesday, September 24, 2003

A glittering exhibition of contemporary tiaras from the Netherlands will be on display at Melbourne’s Gold Treasury Museum from 12 September to 9 November, 2003.

The exhibition, A Tiara for Máxima, features 21 tiaras created to celebrate the 2002 royal wedding of Crown Prince Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands to Argentinian Máxima Zorreguieta.

In the lead-up to the wedding, the Museum of Contemporary Art's-Hertogenbosch, in the Netherlands, held a design competition inviting Dutch artists and designers to create a contemporary tiara for a contemporary princess.

Rather than recreating the jewel-encrusted tiaras of old, the designers sought inspiration from new materials and the Netherlands' Monarchy.

The result is a collection of tiaras with a twist.

The star of the show is a sleek his-and-hers chrome plated helmet with a matching cut-out tiara created by well-known jewellery designer Ted Noten. The winning entry, it was presented to Maxima as a wedding gift.

This exhibition places the tiara in a contemporary context of the fairy-tale wedding of an Argentenian woman to a Dutch royal says Diane Soumilas, Exhibitions Manager at the Gold Treasury Museum. The royal wedding captured the imagination of millions of people, generating widespread excitement and intrigue.

The tiaras reflect the design quality, innovation and mentality for which the Netherlands is internationally renowned says Yvonne Joris, Director, Museum of Contemporary Art's-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands.

A Tiara for Máxima includes works by leading Dutch artists and designers such as Ted Noten, Hans Appenzeller, Gijs Bakker, Dinie Besems, Paul Derrez, Maria Hees, Willem Honing, John Maatman, Ruudt Peters, Philip Sajet, Frank Tjepkema and Marcel Wanders.

The works selected are symbolically charged with both historical and contemporary references and reflect each designer’s personal vision of modern monarchy. As well as being exciting, fascinating and highly innovative, this exhibition provides important insights into contemporary Dutch jewellery design Ms Soumilas says.

Some of the designers reference the relationship between the Netherlands and Argentenia, the symbolism of marriage, the theme of recycling and most importantly the love and happiness between the royal couple.

The Gold Treasury Museum is the only Australian venue for A Tiara for Máxima, providing the community a rare opportunity to view the work of contemporary Dutch artists. The exhibition has been organised by the Museum of Contemporary Art's-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands and has received financial support from the Mondriaan Foundation, Amsterdam.

Yvonne Joris, Director of the MCA's-Hertogenbosch, will give a floor talk at the Gold Treasury Museum on 12 September from 1pm. She will present an overview of the exhibition and discuss recent developments in Dutch jewellery design.

A Forum The Tiara as Icon will be held at the Gold Treasury Museum on Friday 12 September between 5 to 6.30pm. Four art/jewellery experts including Yvonne Joris, Robert Baines, Susan Cohn and Mascha Moje will discuss/debate the notion of the tiara as an icon, a vehicle for communication, emblem for power and status in the context of the exhibition.

School Holiday Workshop – make your very own Tiara Magic
Begin with an exploration of the wonderful modern designs by leading Dutch jewellers. Make and take home a tiara from fun materials – prizes to be won!
Lin Celli, experienced and enthusiastic art educator will introduce the exhibition and present the workshop.
1–2 October 2003 10am and 11am $5 per child.
Parents are requested to accompany their children and are admitted free of charge.

Education Program Workshop
Explore A Tiara for Maxima exhibition
Create your own tiara from an array of fun materials 10, 17, 24 and 31 October 2003, 10am.
$5 per student/90 minutes
This workshop includes an introduction to the Gold Treasury Museum.

A Tiara for Máxima
12 September - 9 November
Gold Treasury Museum
Old Treasury building
Spring Street, Melbourne
Victoria 3000

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