Milan, iconic Teatro Gerolamo hosts a spectacular collection of tin vintage toys and containers

Text and photos by Cesare Zucca

Atmospheres of a past time come to life in the exhibition at the Teatro Gerolamo , a little jewel , right in the heart of the City, The exhibit “Latta e molto altro The tin and much more”, is a beautiful collection of vintage toys that offers a collection of toys, boxes and tin plates, wooden toys and a particular section dedicated to war guns. A collection of 500 unique and original pieces, dating from the late ‘800 to the’ 60s, with which to retrace not only the evolution of taste, between aesthetics and functionality, but also the development of the Italian industry (from Saiwa to Venchi) which he entrusted the advertising of his products to decorated containers.

Among the boxes you can admire: the highly sought after Saiwa bins together with a version of the Saiwa box with a dedication by Gabriele D’Annunzio, some of the first Delser boxes dating back to 1905, the magnificent lithographs of the Lazzaroni amaretti di Saronno, Caffè Frank with Dutch extract Elefante, the Venchi, Mera & Longhi cylinders and many others. Among the great toy manufacturers: Günthermann, Lehmann, Gama, Kohler, INGAP and Bell, with the famous Also, Zulu, Tap Tap and Na-Nu signed by Lehmann, the splendid butterflies, together with the prestigious Charlot and a section of war cannons .

Unique pieces stand side by side with very common objects, which have now become a full part of the cultural and popular history of Italy, still present as furnishings and souvenirs in the homes of many families.
The boxes with their shapes and their style show the historical and cultural evolution that characterized Italian production abroad, together with the growth and expansion of large companies such as Lazzaroni, Delta, Saiwa, Baratti & Milani and Delser.

The plaques tell the birth of advertising as a fundamental ally of corporate sales growth, evolving into a real art form.
While the toys will make us reflect on their transformation. You will notice how from simple decorative objects, they will become fun companions designed and created for the entertainment of the little ones.

The wonderful little Theater Gerolamo, right next to the Duomo

Till July 18th every day except Tuesday, from 1:30 pm to 7:00 pm, last admission at 6:00 pm (closed on July 14th)


Teatro Gerolamo

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