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21-04-08 - Diamond Divas: homage to Grace Eternal

Antwerp, April 2, 2008 – At the occasion of the prestigious Diamond Divas exhibition, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre pays homage to the most moving of stars: Grace Kelly. Showing an impressive collection of diamond set jewels, exhibited for the very first time to the public, Diamond Divas will open its doors from April 11 to June 8, 2008 in the Province of Antwerp's Diamond Museum.

Twenty years have passed since her tragic disappearance. Still, the years notwithstanding, Grace has never left us. She was a fairytale princess, an ephemeral queen, an Oscar winning star. With just eleven pictures, Grace Kelly became one of Hollywood's brightest stars. Spotted early on by Alfred Hitchcock, she appeared in Dial M for Murder. Hitchcock appreciated her elegance and acting talent and had her starring again in To Catch A Thief. In 1954, she received an Oscar for her role in The Country Girl.

She met Prince Rainier in 1955, when she was the guest of honour at the Cannes Film Festival. The magazine Paris-Match asked her to do a photo shoot in the Grimaldi Palace. Prince Rainier became her guide...  for life. The future princess arrived on the Rock on April 12, 1956.

The marriage ceremony in the Monaco cathedral attracted more journalists than D-Day. It was the very first worldwide television broadcast, earning a place in history as the first mediatised "celebrity event". Grace Kelly, divine in her Renaissance style gown, wedded Prince Rainier on April 19, 1956 in the presence of King Farouk of Egypt, the Agha Khan and François Mitterand. She became Monaco's best ambassador and reinstated the Grimaldi family in the constellation of European royalty. Taking her function as Princess of Monaco very seriously, she played part far larger than on the silver screen...

Thanks to the Antwerp World Diamond Centre, the visitors will discover the engagement ring with emerald cut diamonds which Prince Rainier gave her in 1955 and she wore in the movie High Society; the fabulous Cartier art deco Rivière necklace, set with rose and old cut diamonds, offered to her by Prince Rainier as a wedding present; a set of three Cartier brooches of platinum, yellow gold, rubies and marquise and brilliant cut diamonds; a second majestic Rivière necklace, and finally the Scroll tiara of platinum, white gold, diamonds and pearls realised by Cartier for Princess Charlotte of Monaco.

Diamond Divas takes place from April 11 to June 8 2008 in the Province of Antwerp's Diamond Museum, Astridplein 19-23, B-2018 Antwerp.

Diamond Divas is under the High Patronage of HRH Princess Mathilde.


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