We have brought this up several times, but knowledge of diamonds is no mere luxury when you want to invest in it. This is exactly why the city of Antwerp is investing in a new diamond museum. In the first room of the diamond museum (named DIVA) will be designed by the Antwerp-based designer Gert Voorjans. We offer you an exclusive look at the concept behind the room.
Investing in diamonds and Antwerp’s new diamond museum20 Jul 21
Interior designer with a reputation
Gert Voorjans has many ongoing projects in various world cities such as London, Madrid, Hong Kong, Tokyo and New York. But, as somebody of Belgian nationality living in Antwerp, he found it to be a great honour to be asked by the city of Antwerp to design the first room of the DIVA. “It is always wonderful to be able to work in your own city”, Voorjans says. “Antwerp is known all over the world for its diamonds. A new museum in the touristic city centre will no doubt attract many visitors.”
The designer received no guidelines from the city. He is, for example, free to choose which pieces and objects will be displayed, providing the permission of the director and curator. The realisation of the building will probably be completed at the end of 2017.
The room of 7 by 15 metre on ground level will be furnished in a homey style. A diamond museum needs peace and quiet to ensure the beautiful and expensive objects can come to life, thus the designer. “That is why we are going for a cosy atmosphere. We want to get rid of the bleak display cases and are instead integrating sofas and comfortable chairs. We thus create a setting that people will be happy to visit again. It will be a pleasant learning environment, in combination with various technological highlights.” There will be many accidental visitors of the museum as well. This is why the interior should be accessible, young and non-elite.
Gert Voorjans mainly used the Golden Age of Antwerp as his guideline. He consciously opts for a combination of multiple atmospheric and stylistic elements. The influences of the Renaissance, Japonism and Turquerie among others will be featured. “Travelling enhanced the citizen’s social standing “, Voorjans says. “By travelling, you showed yourself to be a worldly and intelligent person. The 16th century is in that regard an interesting period of exploration.”
Several periods will be combined, without seeming to chaotic. One word the designer wants to hear nothing about is “eclectic”. He does not want the different styles to clash with each other. Instead, he wants to give the audience the overall picture of the contemporary spirit of that time. “The design will pay homage to Antwerp as an international hub of the diamond trade and industry”, Voorjans says.
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