The tiny landlocked principality of Liechtenstein, nestled between Switzerland and Austria, may be one of the smallest sovereign states in the world, but its ruling family owns a vast art collection, out of all proportion to its size.

For "A Jewel Box from Europe: Treasures from the Collections of the Prince of Liechtenstein," The Bunkamura Museum of Art has brought more than 120 pieces from the collection for a rare visit to Japan — only once before have items from the collection come to these shores.

The Liechtenstein family, which took its name from its grand house in Austria, originally emerged on the scene in the12th century as a close ally of the Habsburgs, providing them with military and political support. Karl I (1569-1627) was madecera the first prince of the Liechtenstein family for helping Matthias, the brother of Rudolf II, take over as Holy Roman Emperor. By the early 18th century, the Liechtenstein family had expanded its influence and power and was rewarded with its own principality.