Gustavianum

The Augsburg Art Cabinet

It was the councillors of Augsburg in 1632 who in the middle of the 30 years war gave the Swedish king Gustav II Adolf this exclusive cabinet as a gift.

The Art Cabinet was placed at Uppsala Castle during Queen Kristina’s period as regent and was given away in 1694 to Uppsala University by Karl XI. The Art Cabinet was placed in the University building of the period, Gustavianum, and is back in its original place today.

The Augsburg Art CabinetThe Art Cabinet is a fantastic piece of artwork. None of the sides are the same. All the surfaces are covered in the finest detail with rich decorations and several hundred miniature paintings. In visible drawers and secret compartments there were over 1000 objects each of which would depict the knowledge of the period.

The Sea God Neptune

The top of the cabinet has been crowned by a mountain of naturalia from the bottom of the sea and from inside the Earth. The Sea God Neptune parades there and on his shoulders rests a Seychelle nut in the shape of a ship encased in silver with the God of Love, Venus.

The Art Cabinet is like a universal museum in miniature, which also reveals the great passion for collecting of the 17th century. Like the princely Art Chambers, the collection represents both naturalia and artificialia, that is, fashioned by nature and man made.

Virtual tour

Take a virtual tour of the inside of the Art Cabinet.