||Gilbert (Brenstein) Arthur
Sir Arthur Gilbert in his study room beside his sculpted figure
Sir Arthur Gilbert was born in London to his parents Bella and Eliezer Bernstein,and grew up in Golders Green in north London, a neighborhood with a large Jewish community.When he was four years old he was sent to a boarding school and later he studied in a boys school. He married Rosalinde Gilbert, a fashion designer, in 1934 and adopted her family name. The couple established an evening gown business which prospered and within fifteen years the couple accumulated a fortune.
In 1949 the Gilbert family moved to Los Angeles, California, U.S.A., where Arthur Gilbert turned his attention to his collector and philanthropic enterprise. He began donating funds to different public organizations in America and Israel. Among others, he founded the Los Angeles Music Center, served as chairman of the American Technion and, together with his wife, built student dormitories in memory of the Israeli sportsmen murdered in Munich at the 1972 Olympic Games. During his later years, Sir Arthur Gilbert was involved in the construction of the building in the Hebrew University for foreign students (as a youth, he arrived in 1925 with his parents for the opening of the Hebrew University on Mt. Scopus in Jerusalem).
The pinnacle of his philanthropic activities was the donation of his tremendous gold and silver objects d'arts collection, valued at more than 200 million dollars, as a millennium gift to Great Britain. This collection of decorative art is considered the largest in the world and is exhibited in the "Somerset House" in London. It was thanks to this philanthropic act that he received the title "Sir" from the Queen of England.
In 2000 contact was made between Sir Arthur Gilbert and the Rishon Le-Zion Museum and the Family Album was granted a large donation which made its wide-scoped development possible.
The Family Album of the Rishon Le-Zion Museum is a unique project and it is named after Sir Arthur Gilbert's parents Bella and Eliezer Bernstein who left England in the year 1934 and came to live in Eretz Israel and built their home on the eastern outskirts of Rishon Le -Zion. Both his parents are buried in the old cemetery of Rishon Le Zion .
Sir Arthur passed away in 2001 in America, at the age of 88.