Hungarian Esterházy Treasury Exhibition in Hangzhou

July 1, 2023  14:49  |  News

Get ready to be transported to a world of elegance and luxury! Dr. Ji Xiaofen, the mastermind behind the China National Silk Museum, joined forces with the fabulous Ms. Anna Bognár from the Museum of Applied Arts in Budapest, and a bunch of other distinguished guests. Together, they unveiled a sensational exhibition — “Silk Robes for Princes – Luxury Silks and Velvets from Hungary’s Esterházy Treasury.” This spectacular showcase took place in Hangzhou and lasted from June 27 to August 21, 2023. It was a fusion of genius from both the China National Silk Museum and the Museum of Applied Arts in Budapest.

Hungarian Esterházy Treasury Exhibition in Hangzhou

Photo – courtesy of China National Silk Museum ©

Prepare to be dazzled as you step into this exhibition, divided into three mesmerizing sections: “Dapper Men’s Gear,” “Equestrian Elegance,” and “Opulent Home Delights.” Brace yourself for a breathtaking display of 34 awe-inspiring sets and pieces. We’re talking silk costumes that will make you swoon, bed covers that whisper tales of extravagance, Persian tapestries that transport you to another era, Ottoman Turkish horse accessories that redefine grandeur, jeweled ceremonial sabers that scream power and majesty, and ceremonial maces fit for a royal procession. The source of this opulence? None other than the prestigious Esterházy family—a Hungarian noble lineage from the 16th and 17th centuries. These treasures have graced the halls of the Museum of Applied Arts in Budapest for a century, preserving their historical significance. And hold onto your hats because thirteen of these ceremonial garments were worn by the dashing male members of the Esterházy family themselves, while others were cherished as ancestral relics. Crafted from the most luxurious silks, velvets, and lace sourced from Italy, Spain, and Turkey, these garments are adorned with pearls, turquoise, and other exquisite gems, expertly fashioned by court goldsmiths. Talk about a fashion statement that echoes through time!

This exhibition goes beyond showcasing cultural treasures. It’s equipped with a mind-blowing feature known as the “Magic Wall.” Step closer, and watch in awe as this interactive wonder allows you to delve deeper into the intricate details of each object, unveiling the hidden secrets and stories from the Hungarian museum’s collection.

This exhibition wasn’t just about silk and sparkle—it was a celebration of cultural exchange. It provided the Chinese audience with a golden ticket to understand and appreciate the profound love that the Hungarian aristocracy of the 16th and 17th centuries had for silk, jewelry, and a sumptuous way of life. While silk may have originated in China, its beauty and craftsmanship have traveled far and wide along the legendary Silk Road, touching the hearts of Eastern and Western cultures alike. This exhibition is a testament to the unifying power of art and the shared appreciation for exquisite craftsmanship.

During the grand opening ceremony, the China National Silk Museum also unveiled big news—the highly anticipated 2023 Silk Road Week. It’s all set to launch on July 12 with the captivating theme of “The Silk Roads: Long Roads, Mutual Goals.” So, in addition to the mind-blowing silk exhibition, the China National Silk Museum has plans to bring a whole new world of silk culture and costume to Hungary in October.

Prepare to be enchanted by the wonders of silk, the majesty of history, and the unbreakable bonds that connect cultures across the Silk Road.