Museums can only accumulate their vast collections by way of donations from collectors who bequeath them upon their deaths or at an earlier period. Taking on board the idea that the Manager of the modelling department at Meissen from 1730 to his death in 1777 Johann Kandler purportedly was responsible to have modelled more than 2000 figural designs. The rarest of these was Italian Comedy characters, Criers, Family groups etc as well as service pieces made for European Royalty and Aristocratic families was how much Meissen Porcelain was valued. Second to Chinese and Japanese ceramics of the later 17th and early 18th centuries.
Prior to Kander Horoldt was the painter who left Vienna to join the Meissen Manufactory where he produced the first of the coloured ware many of which were after Oriental designs from China and Japan. From the Chinese designs can be found of tea and coffee pots, water jugs, tea bowls and saucers, plates and chargers and vases that Horoldt was most famous for. Much of the porcelain that was used in its white natural form originated from the Bottger period. It was only after 1722 that the cross swords mark the Manufactory is so famous for, was introduced to protect its originality. In this video The Meissen Man takes you on a tour of the main Meissen cabinets where can be seen this enormous selection that not only includes examples of Bottger wares, but these very elaborately painted pieces in gilt that was so prized at the time albeit were never used but put out on display to impress important guests who would eat at their feasts while admiring the very fashionable table decoration.
In the palatial homes of the aristocracy from floor to ceiling such pieces of the finest of early 18th century Meissen would be seen sitting on wall brackets.
However, not only are the rarest on display in these vast 4 metre high display cabinets. Together with the rarest are seen the more ordinary tea wares, some sparsely painted with flowers or people and on the other end of the scale the rarer pieces, sugar boxes that would have originated in Bottger porcelain and decorated by Horoldt or his contemporaries. Also included is a part set on a tray; teapot, coffee pot, milk jug sugar bowl and cup modelled in the Marcolini period towards the end of the 18th century circa 1790. On another shelf lined up are six sugar boxes that date between 1720-1735. A hexagonal fruit bowl painted in the Flying Tiger pattern, a large Jar and cover with floral multicoloured decoration after the popular Japanese Kakiemon designs. An armorial Charger from Count Bruhl’s famous Swan Service sits next to an even larger Armorial Charger that dates from the 1730’s over looking a shelf below with a selection of other rare early Meissen.