Centerpiece “The Grail”
Anton Seder, Theodor Heiden
Munich, between 1899 and 1900
Gold, silver, various precious stones, nephrite, enamel
H. 60.7 cm
Acquired with the support of the Ernst von Siemens Kunststiftung and the Kulturstiftung der Länder in 1993
Inv. No. 93/983
Theodor Heiden, one of the most prominent Munich goldsmiths of his time, and the designer Anton Seder from Strasbourg created with the 'Grail' their most important masterpiece. This precious centrepiece, made specifically for the Paris World Exhibition in 1900, embodies the pinnacle of historicist German goldsmith's art. Motifs from different adaptations of the Medieval myth of the Grail are combined in a witty and highly evocative manner: from the depiction of the magnificent Temple of the Grail made of gold and precious stones to the interpretation of the Grail as a communion bowl and as the vessel that collected the blood of Christ.