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Porcelain & Pompadour

Before there was Regency, there was “Rococo”. 

Rococo began in France sometime around 1730 as a reaction against the more formal Louis XIV style.

Jeanne Antoinette Poisson better known as Marquise de Pompadour was a prominent member of the French court and the official chief mistress of King Louis XV. Madame de Pompadour and the style of Rococo are intertwined and are often used together to define the fashion and style prevalent during the reign of Louis XV.

Rococo encompasses the beauty of florals, asymmetry of nature with scrolls and curlicues, pastoral landscapes, winged cherubs, love and pleasure. The artist François Boucher perfected this style in paint. He was also essential as a source for figure painting and sculpture at Vincennes/Sèvres.

Mme de Pompadour’s arrival at Versailles coincided with the burgeoning success of the porcelain factory at Vincennes. The factory prior to 1745 was struggling to succeed, but flourished with the involvement of Madame De Pompadour. She started with buying delicate porcelain flowers from Vincennes and remained a lifelong patron of the factory. Over the course of her life, she bought toilet wares, tea wares, baskets, wine coolers for use and for decoration of her residences.

In addition to supporting the arts, Pompadour is also considered an amateur printmaker who made print engravings with the help of Boucher. The original cameo portrait of Madame de Pompadour’s pet spaniel (Mimi) is lost and the only print in record of what the gem looked like is at the the Walters Art Museum.

Presenting our “Pompadour Collection” of wallpaper prints inspired by Boucher’s “Madame de Pompadour” which is currently on display as part of the Bavarian State Painting Collections at the Alte Pinakothek in Munich, Germany.

The motifs and patterns featuring ribbons, lace and florals capture the playfulness and asymmetrical style of Rococo.

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