“Napoleon Bonaparte reorganized the European world in many respects. 2019 will mark the 250th anniversary of his birthday, an occasion that inspired Pforzheim’s Jewellery Museum to organize a special exhibition spotlighting the new kind of jewellery and fashion characteristic of the Napoleonic era. Back then, the Neoclassical style of the Revolution and the decorative Empire style spread all over Western Europe well into Russia. The moral concepts developed during the Enlightenment called for an aesthetic inspired by reason, which met the taste of an increasingly powerful, self-confident and educated middle class, and influenced all areas of culture – starting from architecture, painting, furniture, garments and jewellery all the way through to literature and music. The visual arts were expected to lead to the emergence of an intellectual aristocracy to break with the tradition of hereditary aristocracy. Over the course of Napoleon’s imperial reign, the Empire style unfolded its representative splendour to perfection. Including several pieces created by Nitot, Napoleon’s court jeweller, the exhibition also showcases jewellery worn in his social environment. Numerous pictures show how Napoleon presented himself and had himself depicted and, exhibited alongside documents, as well as utilitarian and luxury items, give visitors an impression of his epoch”.
Two photographic reproductions of pieces from the collection of the Fondation Napoléon will also be on display: the preparatory drawing of the Sacre by David (INV 291) and Josephine’s tea service by Biennais (INV 966).
Admission € 6, reduced price € 3.50, admission to both the permanent and special exhibition € 8.50
Download the trilingual exhibition brochure here
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