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Wednesday, 17 October 2007 22:39

New Exhibits in the Amber Museum Collection

Written by  Michał Kosior
The Gdansk Amber Museum has increased its collection with donated exhibits. An official presentation of the latest inclusion collection, a record-size amber nugget, jewellery donations and a new book on the Amber Museum took place on.

The new exhibits
The Customs Office in Biala Podlaska gave the Amber Museum a nugget weighing 1,835 g which was seized on the Polish-Ukrainian border. It most likely comes from the deposits in the Sambian Peninsula, which is suggested by its honey colour, partially natural clarity and also the lack of an external dark weathered layer which is characteristic of Ukrainian amber. Its crust has a rich naturally sculpted surface with wavy edges. Numerous drips are visible on the nugget as well as bark impressions; the top side has got a mark where the level of resin was, while the bottom has got a visible internal icicle, i.e. a primary drip, which was covered by further discharges of liquid resin.
The Museum’s collection has also been enriched by three inclusions purchased and donated by the BRE Bank Foundation. These are two plant inclusions and one animal inclusion of a praying mantis. These insects are especially rare for specimens found as  amber inclusions. The donated nugget contains as many as five of them, which is a first in museum collections. The two other plant inclusions are also curios in the collectors’ market: a leaf and thuja twig visible to the naked eye in one nugget and a perfectly visible and well preserved berry in the other.
The final donation presented that day consisted of award winning designs by the S&A Amber Jewellery company, which had already been in the Museum as a deposit. S&A’s owner Adam Pstrągowski donated several works made at the company’s design studio which won awards in numerous competitions. This way, S&A Amber Jewellery became the Museum’s biggest donor in terms of the number of exhibits given to the contemporary art department.

The book on the Amber Museum
The book entitled “Muzeum Bursztynu. Nowy Oddział Muzeum Historycznego Miasta Gdańska – otwarcie – prezentacja” [The Amber Museum. The New Branch of the Historical Museum of the City of Gdansk – opening – presentation] is the Amber Museum’s first publication; it is 167 pages long and contains information about the Museum, amber and the history amber craft in Gdansk. The album presents the history of the Dluga Street Foregate, which currently houses the Museum, a historical overview of Gdansk amber craft and the Museum’s development plans with its future seat in Granary Island. Amber is the topic of fourteen articles by world-famous experts who cover its history, localities and use; the book also presents collections from museums abroad (incl. the Vatican Museum, the Hermitage, Tsarskoye Selo). The album is generously illustrated with photographs of the most valuable objects owned by the Museum and presented at the temporary exhibition which accompanied the Museum’s opening. The book is in Polish with English captions under the photographs and is accompanied by a CD-ROM with English, German and Russian translations of the entire publication. The album and CD-ROM package costs PLN 50.00 and is available in the Museum’s ticket office.
Michał Kosior

Michał Kosior

Connected with the jewellery trade since 1999, currently cooperates with the amber portal amber.com.pl and the trade magazine “Watches and Jewellery”, as well as other trade press abroad.

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