Exhibit Preview: "Worth Its Weight: Gold from the Ground Up"

August 7, 2015

Exhibit Preview: Gold, pearl and diamond jewelry suite by Tiffany & Co., 1940-41. Copyright Tiffany & Co. Archives.

Since the earliest civilizations, people around the world have been fascinated by the sparkling metal they found flowing in mountain streams and mined from deep in the earth. We risk our lives to get it, we wear it on our bodies, we use it as money and we even bring it with us into outer space. The Museum’s upcoming exhibit, “Worth Its Weight: Gold from the Ground Up,” will captivate visitors with the many spectacular and unexpected ways gold has influenced our lives.

“Worth Its Weight” will be on view in three galleries, as well as the Museum’s theater. The “Gold in America” section will feature three subject areas: Gold Rushes, Finance and Mining & Refining. By learning about these topics, visitors will understand how the story of gold is intimately intertwined with American history.

“The Many Faces of Gold” section will feature eight vignettes on the myriad uses for gold and its meaning around the world. We will not only discuss gold as a physical material, but also how the concept of “gold” has become a symbol of “the best.” Topics for “The Many Faces of Gold” include Gold and the Body, Science & Technology, Religion, Design, World History, Entertainment & Pop Culture, Awards & Commemoration, and Branding & Marketing.

The most familiar relationship people have with gold is through jewelry and adornment. The “Jewelry Box” room will focus on the luxury and glamour of gold jewelry and décor, with several unique and stunning objects on loan from the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History, the Tiffany & Co. Archives and contemporary jewelry designer Marla Aaron.

The “Midas Touch” room will feature the creations of renowned jeweler Sidney Mobell, a modern day Midas who transforms everyday items into dazzling gold and jeweled artworks, challenging the relationship between the mundane and the luxurious.

“Worth Its Weight” is sponsored by Steve Wozniak and Sydney Mobell, with additional support from Van Eck Gold Funds and IPMI. It will be on view from November 19, 2015 through December 2016.