East Meeting West—European Porcelain Wares

China is the hometown of porcelain and the invention of porcelain is great contribution of Chinese nation to the world civilization. Since the late 9th century, Chinese porcelain products have been continuously exported around the world via land and maritime Silk Road, serving the function of bridge and bond in the exchange of Chinese and Western civilization.With the approach of Age of Sail in 16th century, the trade between China and Europe enjoyed rapid growth. The wealthiest people bought a great deal of Chinese porcelain wares to beautify house and life, thus promoting the birth and rapid rise of porcelain industry in Europe. From 18th century, as starting from replicating and reproducing Chinese porcelain, European manufacturers have produced porcelain articles in integration and innovation with Europe style, as well as shape, pattern and color different from that of China, by gradually combining European culture and tradition. The porcelain industry self-contained from counterfeit, combination and innovation became the most important infant industry during European industrial revolution, making the economic development of Europe in 200 years of modern times possible, and forming the splendid European porcelain art while creating big wealth in the meantime.Almost 200 pieces of European porcelain wares shown in this exhibition are treasures collected in Shanghai History Museum and were donated by Canadian collector Laszlo Parakovits and Sun Jianwei couple. Taking the development of European porcelain industry as a key, the exhibition was composed by such four units as “communication”, “integration”, “innovation” and “development”, which demonstrates the history of European porcelain from reproducing Chinese products at early stage to producing new porcelain products by gradually integrating western cultural element and innovative production technology. It is expected that visitors would make further understanding about the exchange and integration of Chinese and Western cultures, appreciate artistic charm of western porcelain, and learn about its course of history and the important role of Chinese porcelain on European modern industrial development.

 

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