“Where better for royal treasures than at the Palace? Art spotlights from the collection of the British Royal Family. We invite you to discover in the Palace of Dacia-Romania goblets, glasses, decanters, goblets classified Tesaur that are part of a gilded crystal table set ordered by Queen Maria more than a century ago, as well as other very valuable objects that they belonged to the Romanian royal family, along with royal art brought from the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. We are happy to celebrate Romania’s National Day in this way and thank the Cotroceni National Museum for opening up to this partnership”, declares Ioana Ciocan, CEO of Art Safari and commissioner of Romania at the Venice Biennale.
The treasures of royalty at Art Safari / Treasure exhibits from the Cotroceni National Museum, visiting the Dacia-Romania Palace!Photo: Art Safari
“The collaboration between Art Safari and the Cotroceni National Museum, a beautiful and inspired initiative by Mrs. Ioana Ciocan, for which we thank her, has the potential to generate a unique experience for the public. Stepping into the history-laden space of the Cotroceni National Museum and discovering the works of valuable contemporary artists is a surprise that all visitors will surely appreciate. At the same time, let’s not forget that Queen Maria was a lover and creator of art, so where could contemporary art find a better place than in the apartments and salons that, more than a hundred years ago, -he decorated with such refinement”,says Ana-Maria Ludatșer, general director of the Cotroceni National Museum.
The portrait of Queen Mary, next to works from the Queen Victoria museum
One of the most appreciated works in the Cotroceni National Museum, “Portrait of Princess Maria”,by Costin Petrescu (1872 – 1954), is among the works that will be exhibited at Art Safari. The portrait was made immediately after the marriage of the young Princess Maria with Prince Ferdinand, the heir to the throne of Romania. Particularly expressive, the portrait captures the beauty and delicacy of Princess Maria, but also the state of melancholy, perhaps a consequence of the distance from the British royal family and the adaptation to the new state of affairs: the marriage at only 17 years of age to the heir to the throne of an unknown and distant country.
The silver snuffbox of King Ferdinand I also comes from the museum’s collection. It was made in the “Belmont Palace Bucharest 935” workshop in the 1920s, a period from which many objects used in everyday life by the royal family date. King Ferdinand was an avid smoker, which is why he ordered gold and silver cigarette holders from famous jewelry companies (Cartier, A&J Roller, Joseph Resch&Fils).
5 o’clock at the Dacia-Romania Palace, with royal dishes
Among the objects that complete the temporary exhibition of the Cotroceni National Museum at Art Safari are several pieces from Neo-Byzantine style crystal table service, commissioned by Princess Maria, the future queen., The service was carried out in 1906 in Oberwieslau, Munich, by the Poschmeyer company, the author being Carl George von Reichenbach. Several pieces from this service – carafe with stopper, bowl, goblets, glasses, goblets, goblet – will be able to be admired in a special setting at Art Safari.
The neo-Byzantine service classed Thesaur was frequently used at the royal breakfasts and dinners taken at the round table in Byzantine and Celtic style in the Cotroceni Royal Dining Room. All the pieces of the service are gilded, painted with a rich decoration traced with the pen in the shade of brick red and are decorated with cabochons (semi-precious stones) of different shapes, sizes and colors. Zoomorphic elements are also outlined on the foot cups: fish, the phoenix bird, lion, eagle.
Another special piece from the collection of the Cotroceni National Museum present at Art Safari is an Art Nouveau style gilt, whose patron was, in 1905, Princess Maria. Made of wood, at the Sinaia School of Arts and Crafts, the chair was called “Lily chair”, because on the backrest is carved a tall lily, Princess Maria’s favorite flower.
- Art Safari: Thursday-Sunday (12:00-21:00), until December 11, Palatul Dacia-România, street Lipscani no. 18-20, Bucharest; every Friday and Saturday there are Night Tours from 10pm to 1am, special experiences that include guided tours of exhibitions, live music and prosecco.
- Cotroceni National Museum: Tuesday-Sunday (9:00-17:00, only by appointment 24 hours in advance), Bulevardul Geniului, no. 1, Bucharest
- Tickets can be purchased online or at the door. The organizers recommend purchasing tickets online to avoid crowding.
About Art Safari Bucharest
Art Safari, a cultural project funded by the Ministry of Culture and supported by Lidl, GLO and Deutsche Bank, specializes in the creation of art exhibition pavilions. The annual organizer of the Bucharest Art Pavilion – the largest conglomerate of art exhibitions in Romania – now in its 10th edition, carries out, in partnership with Romanian art museums and private collectors, extensive retrospective exhibitions that aim to recover values of heritage. With a strong educational side, its mission is to bring art closer to the public and educate new generations by organizing art workshops for children, guided tours and contemporary art exhibitions in unconventional spaces, such as Henri Coandă Airport or the Bucharest metro .
Art Safari is held under the patronage of the Bucharest City Hall and UNESCO Romania and is made in partnership with the Bucharest City Museum, the Romanian Cultural Institute and the National Art Museum of Romania. The official Art Safari partner is BCR. Art Safari’s educational partner is the Step by Step Center from Bucharest. In the 9 editions so far, it has registered almost 300,000 visitors. More details: artsafari.ro.
About the Cotroceni National Museum
The Cotroceni National Museum is set up within a historical monument representative of Romanian architecture from the end of the 19th century, the Cotroceni royal palace, which remarkably integrated part of the medieval architecture of the monastery founded by the lord of the Wallachia, Şerban Cantacuzino, towards the end of the century the seventeenth.
The Cotroceni National Museum is an institution focused on reflecting the history of the Cotroceni ensemble, its evolution and transformations over time. Its specificity is given by combining the characteristics of a memorial space, with a history of almost 350 years, with those of a museum of decorative arts.
The visitor will be impressed by the originality of the Cantacuzino spaces, remembering the founder of the ensemble, Voivode Șerban Cantacuzino (1679-1688), the church of the Cotroceni monastery, the objects that belonged to him and which are exhibited in the large cellar, in the exhibition “Cotroceni Church. History, spirituality and art”, by the interior architecture with the multitude of styles specific to the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, by the artistic prints of the most important historical personalities who lived there: ruler Alexandru Ioan Cuza and Mrs. Elena Cuza, the king Charles I and Queen Elizabeth, King Ferdinand I and Queen Mary.
Its salons and apartments have a special evocative power, the emphasis being placed not only on the intrinsic value of the various artifacts, but also on their significance from the perspective of the relationships with the personalities who lived in these rooms over time.
Among the star exhibits is the parade sword of ruler Alexandru Ioan Cuza, received from the Prince of Serbia Mihail Obrenovic; Queen Mary’s gilded crystal set with precious and semi-precious stones; the round gilded wooden table with twenty-four chairs, in Celtic and Byzantine style, from the royal dining room, designed by Queen Mary; the pool table of King Charles I dating from the late 19th century; the work “Allegory of Air”, c. XVI (Jacopo Bassano workshop); the 74-arm chandelier of the Cotroceni church (19th century); The Constitution of Romania from 1923, with the signatures of the members of the government and the two presidents of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate.
In its more than 30 years of existence, the Cotroceni National Museum has established itself in the Romanian cultural and social environment as a modern institution, which tends, through organization and cultural projects, to synchronize with the new trends in contemporary museology. Various scientific and exhibition programs were carried out, addressing themes of history, art history (from medieval to contemporary art) and restoration.