If you’ve tuned in to our Radio show Amazing Appraising which airs live on WOR Radio every Sunday from 8-9pm you may have noticed, we have a very interesting segment called ‘What’s Hot and What’s Not’. In yesterday's blog post we discussed ‘What’s Not Hot: Lalique’ Today we will be furthering our interesting discussion on the topic What’s Not Hot on the market by exploring the porcelain figurines of Lladró.
The history of Lladró porcelain took place in 1953 in the northwestern town of Valencia, Spain, called Tavernes Blanques when three brothers, Juan, José, and Vicente Lladró had set off on their creation of the porcelain company famously known as Lladró. The first generation of their works were focused more primarily on functional pieces. Later, Lladró had steered his attention on creating porcelain figurines depicting various “stories” during the latter half of the 1950s. They had a main goal to reach, and that was to revitalize the importance of decorative figurine collecting traditions, that were primarily made popular during the earlier days of porcelain manufacturing, such as the Meissen pieces, which were created and made popular in the 18th century. This so-called revival was simplified with Lladró’s creation of a smoother process when firing the porcelain pieces. This process allowed for a more effective and efficient application of the rich pastel coloring and artistic flare given to the pieces. Later on, in the
following decades, the acclaim associated with these Lladró pieces arose greatly throughout Spain. In the 1970s a different lineage of porcelain pieces came about within the works of Lladró such as the “Gres” line of works which featured a more subdued color palette and a matte porcelain finish. The company was also able to embark on the rendering technique called the “Flowers of the Season” Which focused on small renderings depicting detailed hands and flowers on a bouquet. When the 1980s had approached, the presence of Lladró was ultimately and determinably international. During this time, Lladró had acquired their first international gallery in New York City as well as a developed Lladró collectors society. To conclude this brief history, the appreciation for the Lladró brand still continues today, however as the times continue to change, so does the decorative value of these pieces. Along with Hummels, Lalique, and Limoges, these porcelain figurines all have something in common and that is that, although in the collector’s market they are wonderful pieces to acquire, they are not desired as much by the general population. However, I would argue that although the concept of collecting such depictive porcelain figurines is simply outdated, Lladró designs push towards expanding their buyers interests by including other porcelain-based objects such as lighting fixtures, modern sculpture, and more recently candles, and scents for the home.
Reference Image, Lladró Porcelain Figurine 'Flowers for Everyone'
Evaluating a Genuine Lladró
With so many reproductions of these figurines, here are some key tips in deciphering a real Lladró from a fake. First and foremost check the type of seal which should be typically located on the bottom of the porcelain. The company Lladró establishes their own identity and the difference can be seen in the Antique of its porcelain figurines, through form, and the type of the seal taxed in the figurine. In the early days of Lladró, in all the figurines of the pre-production list various seals were taxed and proceeded to be printed. If you realize one of the seals is a brand with vertical and horizontal lines, oddly enough this is also a real hallmark of the early years of Lladró. As a general rule of thumb here is a list of considerations that any prospective buyer should consider before or while looking for a Lladró: the type of sculpture (over time they have expanded their collection of not only porcelain figurines), the Lladró sets, authenticity of the pieces, limited-time edition pieces, retired pieces, and material, and lastly, the price and current condition of the pieces.
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