METC Hosts "A Collector's Cabinet"


Collecting has been defined as “the selecting, gathering, and keeping of objects of subjective value.” Most people would agree that they do indeed have some sort of a collection. It seems to be a part of human nature to seek to acquire special objects with which to surround themselves. The urge to collect can almost be compared to the thrill of the hunt: an avid collector enjoys the challenge and rejoices with each new find.


Thus it was in this spirit of acquisition that 16th and 17th century Dutch and Flemish collectors sought to surround themselves with items representing their world, their mental outlook, and their thirst for discovery about themselves and the world around them. The collections acquired by these seekers often achieved such proportion that a simple cupboard or table top was insufficient for the display of the owner’s curios. As a result, they outfitted small rooms called “collector’s cabinets” or “cabinets of curiosities” which served both to house the collections and to provide suitable settings in which to entertain guests and show off their acquisitions to admiring visitors.


The thrill of acquisition of a new object to add to one’s collection continues to this day. Some of the collections we have featured are: A Little of Lemko, collections of Russian artifacts from Operations Manager April Lyzak and Educator Marie Seilus. Curator of Education Meg Wastie’s collection Bunnies exhibited her life-long infatuation with rabbits of all kinds. Ellen Judd has shown Antique Brass Candlesticks, and Sandy Miller Citron contributed her collection of all things Lemon.


The Museum would like to help you promote your collection infatuation and display your objects in selected areas of the Museum for 4-6 week periods. Each mini-exhibit will include a biography of the collector and a brief information sheet about the objects.

Collectors may apply to Meg Wastie, Curator of Education  973-377-2982 x12 or 

Or click HERE for a registration form you can print out and return to Meg Wastie.

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