Chantilly Porcelain Manufactory

Datesactive about 1730 - 1805
RolesArtist, Manufacturer

After his failure as Louis XV's chief minister forced him out of Paris in 1726, the Prince de Condé established a porcelain factory at his château at Chantilly. The prince was only one of several aristocrats who established factories in France and Germany in the eighteenth century, searching for the elusive recipe for true porcelain like that produced in China and Japan. The factory's early production consisted of pieces painted in imitation of Japanese ceramics, probably copied directly from the prince's substantial collection. Other designs adapted simplified Eastern motifs, often inaccurately, to create brightly colored, richly patterned works.Chantilly's early works were made from soft-paste porcelain covered with an opaque tin glaze that produced a lustrous background for the painted decoration in enamel colors. The manufactory specialized in delicately modeled jugs, tureens, plates, teapots, and cups and saucers shaped like leaves. They also produced more fanciful designs, such as bald smiling Chinese figures, sometimes squatting beside vases that serve as potpourri or perfume burners. After the prince's death in 1740 removed the factory's chief financial support, Chantilly's fortunes began to waver; as a result, the wares became less innovative.