Lladró Museum, Valencia, Spain
The Lladrós: “Each figurine is a hymn to beauty, to goodness, in a word, to love”
by MARY FORAN
The creators of the famous Lladró figurines, Vicente Lladró and brothers-in-business José and Juan, said in the book The Magic World of Porcelain published by Salvat Editores S.A. that “They tell us that we are working for a better world, and it is true. . . Each porcelain figurine is also a reflection of the spirit of its owner, because each figurine is a hymn to beauty, to goodness, in a word, to love. This is the ultimate meaning of all our efforts.”
According to the book, the amazingly creative Lladró brothers “are constantly faced with [the] endless obsession with marrying art and technology.”
Juan Lladró was quoted as saying: “Our porcelain pieces are works of art expressed through a highly perfected technique. So we looked for our symbol in Nature and chemistry, the essential science in the art of porcelain. And we chose a flower, a flower in its purest simplicity. A flower resting on a chemical symbol whose meaning was lost a long time ago. It has become a timeless symbol that expresses man’s efforts to master material and achieve beauty.”
For his part, Vicente Lladró says in the book that “Life passes by but art remains” in a paraphrasing of the old Latin saying.
Vicente Lladró goes on to say: “For this reason I believe that Lladró is much more important than me since it is the work of so many people giving of their best. It would be extremely selfish of me to sacrifice the firm for my own personal profit, so I would feel extremely grieved if my children didn’t carry on this tradition. It is a marvelous experience to be on a plane in a distant country and see that someone there knows the name Lladró, not because they know me as a person but because they know my work. And if they manage to identify it with my person, they receive me as someone who has beautified their lives. I live where I was born and I am very proud to be Spanish and that my Spanish surname should be associated with the unique art form.”
The world of ‘Lladró-collecting’ is totally international. The hallmark of Lladró’s uniqueness is sought after everywhere.
“The Lladró name is one of the most well-known names all over the world,” according to The Magic World of Porcelain.
(The book says a former Pope had a piece of Lladró called ‘The Three Wise Men’ in his private rooms! And the late President of the United States Ronald Reagan had a grouping of horses.)
On a personal note, my mother, who has passed on now, collected the beautiful figurines on her many trips to Spain and had them shipped back home to enjoy in her glass-enclosed curio cabinet – a delightful place to view the delicate dancers, the occasional nun-in-habit, the Don Quixote, the bulls and many Valencian inspirations of the company.
All her numerous visitors exclaimed at their beauty and precision, and her collection was eventually bought by another collector!
I remembered staring at them in awe when at home, and buying her several when I lived in Spain, knowing how much she loved the brand.
Lladró beautified our lives and I will always be grateful . . .
The only Lladró I kept was a sad little figurine of a young goose-seller girl living in poverty in Madrid. . . Now that I’ve come back for a visit as a tourist I’ve seen the Bright and Happy side of life in the Capital of Spain!
Thank you, Madrid!
Featured image/Eseuvece-commonswiki, PD. Cropped. Framed supplied.
“En sus pensamientos”/Colin Angus Mackay, Fair use via Wikipedia
Fisherboy figurine/SherlockGnomes72, CC BY-SA4.0
A Lladró maiden/Rob Olivera, CC BY2.0 via Flickr
Entrance to the Lladró factory/Francesc Fort, CC BY-SA4.0, Wikipedia
Born in Seattle, WA, U.S.A., and a graduate of the University of Oregon in Spanish and General Literature, Mary lived in Madrid, Spain during the 80s, a period in Spanish history which became known as “The Transition”. She taught English as a Foreign Language and worked as Managing Editor of the Guidepost when it was still a weekly print publication. She did a stint on Spanish Foreign Radio and Radio Cadena, and corresponded for a Financial Times of London newsletter. She still has ties to Spain, loves the people and the country, and has great hopes for the future!
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