It’s been 50 years since the exhibition “Diamond Fund”, part of Gokhran of Russia, was opened. In November 2017 Gokhran and the State Historical Museum presented a joint exhibition “National treasures of Russia” in honor of this jubilee.
History of the Gokhran collection began in 1719 with the Decree of Peter the Great to establish a proper storage department for crown jewels, ceremonial jewelry of the royal family, state regalia and other valuables. This department called the Diamond Room was located at the Winter Palace. Soon, magnificent pieces of jewelry and unique gems started to be collected and brought to the new treasury from different countries around the world. In 1914 during the WWI the jewelry were relocated from Saint Petersburg to the Moscow Kremlin, further from the battle zone. After the revolution, in 1922 People’s Commissariat of Finance prepared the detailed description of the collection and gave it a new name – the Diamond fund. On the 2nd of November, 1967 L. Brezhnev opened the permanent exhibition “Diamond Fund” in the Moscow Kremlin.
Art objects of remarkable court jewelers made on the order of the Cabinet of his Imperial Majesty and archival materials illustrating history of the Diamond Fund collection are represented at the exhibition “National treasures of Russia” in the State Historical Museum. The exposition presents masterpieces of Russian gold and silver jewelry from the late XVII till the XX century. Among them – exquisite snuffboxes made by court jeweler of Empress Catherine II Jean-Pierre Adore and enameller Pierre Tremens who worked for the imperial family and Russian aristocracy. Other masterpieces of jewelry art are three brooches of the early XIX century made in the workshop of Jacob and Francois Duval for Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna, daughter of Emperor Paul I.
Firm of Carl Faberge, founded in St. Petersburg in 1842, was one of the main court workshops under Alexander III and Nicholas II. The works of this firm, connected with the most significant events of Russian Imperial House are also represented at the exhibition.
Among masterpieces of the XVIII-XX centuries the State Historical Museum presents a unique cup, carved by Emperor Peter the Great.
Art works of modern Russian jewelers executed in the best traditions of Russian toreutics also can be seen at the exposition. Of special interest are small copies of orb and scepter, made in 1999 to the 280th anniversary of Gokhran. Jewelers managed to reproduce as precisely as possible the details of authentic imperial regalia.