Renaissance Drinking Vessels

February-March 2021

Online exhibition made in collaboration with Justin Raccanello (London), part of the exhibition "Les Petits Plats  dans les Grands _ Le Design au service de la table"  held at the Galerie Aveline, Paris

RENAISSANCE DRINKING VESSELS 

During the Renaissance, the context of the Princely art de la table took on a new symbolic dimension. While still influenced by the liturgic ritual in the Middle Ages, by the end of the 15th century it had become a social feature of the Prince or Duke himself. Thus, the magnificence of the tableware played a key role and was meant to reflect the quality of both the guest and the host. Displayed accordingly to show off the brilliance of the court, the buffet would have been set up in the grand reception hall of the palace or occasionally in an elaborate construction specially built for the purpose. The service would comprise ewers, basins, plates and chargers, made of silver, ceramics, glass or painted enamel. The pieces were displayed next to each other on several shelves rising gradually above the furniture. In this way the utilitarian function of the objects became unimportant and they could be appreciated solely for their ornamental value.

This spectacular accumulation of sumptuous works of art aimed at illustrating the wealth, power and culture of the host who wanted to impress his guests. Sumptuous tableware called «maiolica» (the term for Italian Renaissance tin-glazed earthenware) was produced in Italy (workshops in Urbino), and exquisite painted enamels were produced in Limoges, France. From 1540’s the composition of maiolica services became more complex. Potters invented new shapes and larger pieces with great diversity, influenced by Mannerist style.The potters created these new shapes after engraved drawing sorby copying gold and silversmith designs, and sometimes sharing similarities with objects made in alabaster.

These Italian paintings are showcased by Galerie Canesso at the exhibition "Les Petits Plats dans les Grands - Le Design au service de la table" held at the Galerie Aveline (Place Beauvau, Paris).

 

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Sacred Water

Maiolica Pilgrim Flask collectors piece.

Pilgrims' Tears

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Riddles and Jewels

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Water of Venus