Patronised by the French royal family, the Sèvres Porcelain Factory was the leading porcelain manufacturer in Europe from the mid-18th century. It was renowned for producing wares of the highest quality and extravagance, created using unrivalled production techniques and innovative artistic design.
Founded in Vincennes in 1740 but relocated to Sèvres in 1756, the factory aimed to rival the popular imported wares of China, Japan and Germany by employing some of France’s most talented artists and chemists. Initially, the factory produced only soft-past porcelain, developing a recipe that was purer than other French porcelains and that took enamel colours and gilding superbly well. The factory later developed and produced the more resilient hard-paste porcelain, in addition to its earlier counterpart.
The Sèvres factory produced a large range of products, including table and useful wares, sculptures, vases and objects of virtue. Each piece was crafted by specialists in various elements of the production process, such as throwers, sculptors, painters and gilders.
In 1789, the French Revolution brought to an end the royal patronage that the Sèvres factory had enjoyed during it’s first fifty years of production, but by then its wares were admired, envied and copied internationally. The Sèvres factory continues to work with innovative craftsmen and designers to produce high-quality porcelain to this day.