Splendid White



The Reiner Winkler
Ivory Collection
at the Liebieghaus

About the exhibition

A few years ago, the Liebieghaus Skulpturensammlung succeeded in making the most significant addition to its own holdings in the history of the museum: a collection of precious ivory sculptures of the Baroque and Rococo periods from the estate of the patron Reiner Winkler (1925–2020). The Ernst von Siemens Kunststiftung, the Städelsche Museums-Verein, and the Städel Museum, with the support of the Kulturstiftung der Länder and the Hessische Kulturstiftung, acquired this unique collection, which was made possible in the first place by Reiner Winkler’s generous donation of the majority of the collection.

Since then, masterpieces by world-famous sculptors, such as “Fury on a Charging Horse” (1610), “The Three Parcae” (ca. 1670), “Chronos on the Globe” (ca. 1720/25?), and the “Allegory of Damnation in Hell (Anima Dannata?)” (1736) have been on display at the Liebieghaus in the exhibition “White Wedding.”

White Wedding now complete

With the exhibition and new collection presentation “Splendid White”, the Reiner Winkler Ivory Collection at the Liebieghaus is now complete: as of 2 June 2022, more than 200 historical ivory works will be presented – including a further twenty-one outstanding works of art that remained in the private collection of Reiner Winkler until his death and are now accessible to the public for the first time. In the new collection presentation, the beauty, virtuosity, and richness of variation of baroque ivory carving can be experienced in an impressive way. The last works of art to be displayed and hung in the patron’s private home, including portrait medallions, large-format reliefs with Christian religious motifs and genre scenes, as well as an impressive combination figure, add essential exhibits to the previous collection presentation at the Liebieghaus.


The publication and exhibition “Splendid Wedding” are supported by Stiftung Reiner Winkler and Ernst von Siemens Kunststiftung

The publication and exhibition „White Wedding“ were supported by Stiftung Reiner Winkler, Ernst von Siemens Kunststiftung, and the City of Frankfurt

The acquisition was made possible by Ernst von Siemens Kunststiftung, Städelscher Museums-Verein, Kulturstiftung der Länder and Hessische Kulturstiftung

Worth Knowing

    About the Reiner Winkler Ivory Collection

    Over the course of decades, the collector and patron Reiner Winkler (1925–2020) compiled a private collection of ivory sculptures with a focus on Baroque objects. Winkler built up his collection continuously from 1962 onwards. After a few years of collecting sculptures in various materials and from different periods, he soon concentrated entirely on ivory sculptures of the 17th and 18th centuries, and to a very small extent of the early 19th century.

    Winkler was closely associated with the Liebieghaus Skulpturensammlung and provided the museum with loans for exhibitions on several occasions. At the Liebieghaus, his collection will now find “its new and permanent home” and will thus be preserved “as a ‘Gesamtkunstwerk,’” as Reiner Winkler wished and expressed himself on the occasion of the acquisition in 2019. The unique collection expanded the Liebieghaus’ own internationally important holdings at the highest level. The acquisition also established European ivory art as the central focus of the Liebieghaus’ Baroque and Rococo department – a focus that has since been intensively researched and didactically communicated.

„[it] is the largest addition to the collection in its history”

The Art Newspaper, Catherine Hickley, 21. February 2019


Film “White Wedding”

„a dazzling display“

The Burlington Magazine 163, Aileen Dawson, May 2021