The Politics of Porcelain: Fragile Diplomacy and Meissen Gifts During the Reign of Augustic III

3:00 pm Sun, Feb 24, 2013

Venue: Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute

225 South Street, Williamstown, MA 01267


Sally Majewski


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The eighteenth century was the age of diplomacy and of porcelain. At the glittering Dresden court, the first to boast success in identifying the Arcanum--as the secret recipe for "white gold" (true porcelain) was called--this rare princely prerogative was an unrivaled national treasure, setting the standard for all other porcelain manufactories founded in Meissen's wake. The high point of Meissen production was during the tenures of King Augustus III and his statesman, Heinrich, Count von Brühl, who promoted their political ambitions and flattered foreign courts with fragile porcelain gifts often emblazoned with the recipient's coat of arms.. Dresden court specialist Maureen Cassidy-Geiger, an internationally recognized curator, educator and author, will discuss the politics of porcelain in an illustrated lecture featuring highlights from private and public collections that were shown in her exhibition at Bard Graduate Center in New York in 2007-08.

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