The permanent exhibition of STAM – Ghent City Museum offers a chronological overview of Ghent’s history. The core of the collection consists of objects commissioned by Ghent’s city council, guilds, associations, and charitable institutions. Included in this subcollection are ceremonial objects such as silver bodebussen (messenger badges), the tabard of a herald and a unique ensemble of processional torches and standards of the craft guilds. Other significant historical objects in the collection include a fifteenth century battle standard and a series of mark plates of Ghent’s silversmiths.
The museum also holds a collection of construction fragments, including sculpted beam keys, consoles, monumental brasses, ironwork, gold leather and an ensemble of stained glass windows. In addition, the museum houses furniture, household goods, coins, medals, seal matrices and weapons originating in and around Ghent. Also preserved in the STAM are the oldest designs of the Ghent town hall and belfry, a prayerbook with miniatures by Joris Hoefnagel, and a series of seventeenth-century history paintings made as decoration for Joyous Entries. The highlight of the paintings collection is the panoramic view of Ghent made in 1534 by an anonymous master.
Wout De Vuyst, Curator (January 2022)