Porcelain was widely used in China where the production of this material had been mastered eons before the Europeans even became aware of its existence. Once, however, Europeans became aware of the existence of this exquisite material it quickly became a valuable commodity in the China trade and represented wealth, importance, and refined taste in Europe.
Efforts to recreate porcelain were met with failure until 1710 when Meissen porcelain or Meissen china became the first European hard-paste porcelain. The production of porcelain at Meissen, near Dresden, began in 1710 and then attracted artists and artisans who established one of the most famous porcelain manufacturers. This establishment is still in business today, re-named Staatliche Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen GmbH. In 1720 its signature logo, the crossed swords, was introduced aiming to protect its production. This trademark, the mark of the crossed swords, is one of the oldest trademarks in existence.
Meissen porcelain figurines
Despite Johann Friedrich Böttger holding the title as the first manufacturer of meissen porcelain, Augustus II, the King of Saxony and Poland is known to be the driving force behind the creation of Meissen porcelain figurines as he wished to fill his palace with porcelain objects, including a collection of hundreds of life-size animals. Johann Joachim Kändler was entrusted with the creation of these objects.
Kändler then sculpted harlequins and other Italian commedia dell’arte and theatrical characters, as well as caricatures of members of Augustus III’s court.
During the 18th century Meissen porcelain figurines consisted greatly of animals, such as monkeys in tricorn hats playing different musical instruments.
Meissen porcelain for sale
Meissen porcelain for sale was available only to the wealthy due to the rarity and expense of the porcelain. This of course led to Meissen porcelain figurines becoming a sign of wealth and a status symbol thus leading the wealthy to create vast collections. A Meissen porcelain chocolate pot, cover and stand, dated c.1780, were gifted to Queen Elizabeth II on her wedding.
Antique figurines as well as contemporary Meissen porcelain for sale can be found at renowned establishments which can voucher for their authenticity.
At www.ivoryandart.com you can find a variety of authentic Meissen porcelain figurines. Choose from a variety of topics and styles as well as from figurines to vases and mask holders.