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⚠️ Please note that TEFAF Maastricht has been shortened from it usual duration, after private previews on March 7 & 8, the show will run from the 9th through Thursday 14th

Antique Cashmire palette octagonal garden urns

The ‘Cashmire’ Palette

A widespread interest in exoticism and eclecticism took hold in the late nineteenth century during a period known as the Aesthetic Movement. There was a rediscovery of the Golden Age of Delftware as collectors and intellectuals sought out objects designed in an orientalist style. This marked the first serious attempt to assemble, classify and study…

Windmills

The windmills that dot the landscape of the Netherlands are as familiar as the local tulips, wooden shoes, and cheese. While they are visually charming and recall a past era, the invention of windmills shaped the Netherlands and its inhabitants. Windmills have existed in many different shapes in Europe since 1050. Structural mills with horizontal…

Cold Painting in Red

The range of colors seen on 18th century Delftware were achieved through various techniques, using skills honed throughout many years. Not every paint color could be realized in a single firing process, and there were often several rounds in the kiln. Ceramics painted with grand feu colors of blue, green, and yellow were fired at…

Ets Pieter Schenk, 's Lands Zeemagazijn en de Admiraliteitswerf op Kattenburg

VOC and the Asian Trading Routes

The Dutch East India Company, or the VOC for short (Verenigde Oost Indische Compagnie) was established by charter in 1602. The VOC was first organized to profit from the East Asian spice trade in which the Portuguese already had a stronghold. During the 16th century, the Portuguese established a wide network with settlements in Sri…

Delftware blue and white rectangular plaque Aronson Antiquairs

Delft Plaques, a Window Open onto the World

Dutch Delftware plaques stand out amongst the many examples produced during the 17th century for their extreme delicacy and meticulousness. The "porcelain paintings,” as they were referred to in household inventories, were intended to be admired as if they were paintings on panel, canvas or copper. Unfortunately, because of their similarity in appearance to prints…

Antique Polychrome melon tureens for dining, and the history of delftware and dining explained at Aronson Antiquairs

Trompe l’oeil Amusements

Trompe l’oeil, or deceive the eye, was a technique used in both modeling and painting Delftware to captivate and fool the viewer. One of the predominant centers of production of these naturalistic forms was Delft, where the city’s potteries quickly accommodated the new taste of the nobility and the wealthy bourgeoisie for adorning their tables…

Antique petit feu polychrome puzzle jug at Aronson Antiquairs

The Joke of the Puzzle Jug

The puzzle jug is one of the oldest jokes in the Delft potters’ continually playful repertoire. Puzzle jugs were intended as an amusing tavern game or a conversation piece during a dinner party. One can only imagine the popularity of these objects in homes and taverns as drinkers attempted to consume the contents without causing…

Antique polychrome cows and the history behind the delftware cows

The Feast of Delft Cows

Cows are the most famous and beloved subjects depicted in Dutch Delftware. Since the eighteenth century they have adorned mantelpieces, furniture and window sills. They were always produced in pairs, with their heads turned towards each other and tongues lapping. Remarkably, these cows are almost always painted with lavish swags of floral garland draped around their…

Antique earthenware of blue and manganese Delftware plate

Shades of Blue in Dutch Delftware

While Dutch Delftware comprises many different colors and styles, it is most commonly known for its characteristic blue and white decoration. Many variations within the simple scheme of blue and white can help date an object and place it within an historical context. While fashion largely dictated the color changes, the varieties of blue in…

Dining with Dutch Blue Delftware in the 17th and 18th century Aronson Antiquairs

‘Sur la Table’ in the 17th & 18th Century

Dining has a history of its own. From the fifteenth century onwards, a formal meal became increasingly divided into different courses. The meal began with a course of cold foods served from the buffet or sideboard, followed by hot dishes from the kitchen: roasts, pastries and soup. The meal would end with what would eventually…

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