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Gold: Power and Allure - Goldsmiths' Hall

Gold Ampulla

Exhibition preview

GOLD: Power and Allure, on display from June 1 to July 28, 2012, is the most comprehensive and ambitious exhibition ever staged at Goldsmiths’ Hall.

It powerfully tells the rich and previously untold story of Britain and its relationship with gold, demonstrating the country’s unique golden heritage.

This major project showcases more than 400 gold items ranging in date from as early as 2500 BC to the present day. It includes rare and exquisite works of art, combining sophisticated artistry and skill, together with pieces of exceptional historic significance. Others are esoteric, curious and amusing.

All the exhibits, displayed over three floors at Goldsmiths’ Hall, have been loaned from distinguished institutions and private collections and many have rarely been seen in public before.

This is the first time such an extraordinary group of objects has been brought together. It tells a story of passion and power, fortunes lost and gained, and the special place this metal plays not only in our national, but also our personal histories.

Historian Dr Helen Clifford, the curator of the exhibition, explains:

Gold: Power and Allure presents the opportunity of a lifetime. The challenge has been to draw together the many strands that make a single precious metal so special and central to human society.

“With the focus on Britain it has been possible to assemble a story that goes far back into geological time and forward to the most cutting edge goldworking, where this country excels.

“It reveals a story of the continuity of man’s fascination with gold, from the Bronze Age to modern city finance, via a breathtaking range of more than four thousand years of work. In essence, it is a story of global connections and one where the familiar is transmuted into the iconic, via the power of gold.”

The exhibition will be accompanied by an associated book, Gold: Power and Allure published by Paul Holberton.

The free exhibition will invite donations to The Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry. The Foundation was selected by the Goldsmith’s Company due to its focus on veterans’ welfare, disadvantaged young people and sustainable development.

The Foundation is the culmination of The Princes’ charitable lives so far. Along with the Duchess of Cambridge, they intend to use The Foundation as the main vehicle for their future charitable activities and through raising sustainable sources of funds, The Foundation will be able to make charitable grants and support projects of particular interest.

Visit our Gold: Power and Allure Gallery for a sneak preview of what this exciting exhibition has to offer.

Admission: Free.

Opening Times: Monday to Saturday 10am to 5pm.

Goldsmiths’ Hall, Foster Lane, London, EC2V 6BN

Tel: 020 7606 7010