The rich variety of classical antiquites which Carl Milles collected throughout his creative life are one further expression of Millesgarden's invaluable contribution to the Swedish cultural heritage.
Through lengthly independent study of ancient sculpture in the museums of Paris and Munich in his youth, Milles cultivated a lifelong commitment to incorporating the artistic lessons learned from the ancient masters into his own work. Young Carl's contact with Auguste Rodin gave a further affirmation of the benefits of studying ancient sculpture.
Rodin was an avid admirer and collector of both ancient Mediterranean and east Asian sculpture. As soon as the income from his sculpture commissions permitted, Carl Milles began to collect Greek and Roman antiquities, at first marble sculpture, later smaller bronzes and even ancient ceramic art, coins and jewelry.
When teaching sculpture students, first at the Royal Art Academy in Stockholm in the 1920's and later the American students at Cranbrook, Milles always referred to his "Greek Collection". He encouraged art students to gain an intimate knowledge of these ancient sculptures and take what they needed for their own creative work.
In addition to the Greek and Roman works, Carl even collected fine Egyptian, Etruscan and Chinese antiquities, all which can be seen at Millesgarden today.