Philippe Parpette

Datesactive 1755 - 1757, 1773 - 1806
BornChantilly, France
DiedSèvres, France

Experimenting with a variety of careers, Philippe Parpette worked in several porcelain factories. Trained as a painter at the Chantilly Porcelain Manufactory he moved to the Vincennes Manufactory in 1755 to work as a flower painter. The enrollment register noted that on his arrival, he knew how to "use color well and draw a little, but he promises to improve, [and] has a sweet character, quiet and hard-working."

After only two years at Vincennes, the factory records note that Parpette "disappeared suddenly without any one knowing where he had gone." During an absence of more than fifteen years, he seems to have worked as an enameler in Paris. He returned to porcelain painting after the manufactory had moved to Sèvres, where he soon became one of their chief flower painters, working on a variety of elaborate floral compositions including baskets of fruit and flowers, floral monograms, and garlands. He also claimed to be the inventor of a type of decoration called "jeweling." In this technique, stamped gold foils bearing globules of colored enamels are applied over soft-paste porcelain.

Parpette worked on a number of important commissions, including jeweled cups and saucers with portraits of the French king and queen Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette.