Apr
16

Chinese Export Porcelain of the Seventeenth Century

By the seventeenth century, Chinese porcelain, known for its delicacy and virtuosity, had long been an object of admiration in foreign countries. The term export porcelainrefers to porcelain especially made for international trade. After the Dutch East India Company (Verenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie or VOC) was established in 1602, Chinese export porcelain was among the most desired and profitable commodities in the Dutch world and was traded in vast amounts. As these exotic objects began to alter Western taste, the huge demand from Dutch bourgeoisie and art collectors, in turn, influenced the ornamentation and the shape of various types of export porcelain. My research project examines this cultural, artistic, and commercial dialogue between Chinese producers and Dutch consumers in an attempt to answer the question of which aspects of export porcelain remained authentically Chinese, and which aspects were adapted for the Dutch market.

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