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•D2303. Polychrome Charger

Delft, circa 1670

Painted in blue and yellow in the center with a vase filled with a lush bouquet of flowers on a table, centered by two large flitting insects, all within two blue concentric lines.

Diameter: 34.3 cm. (13.5 in.)

Although early Delftware is characterized by the use of a blue decoration on a white background, several factories started experimenting with colors in the second half of the seventeenth century. One of these factories was De Paauw (The Peacock) factory. Objects produced here around 1700 show the earliest stages of the development of colored Delftware. Such early polychrome objects are extremely rare. The characteristic color palette of De Paauw factory consists of the colors blue, green and yellow. These grand feu colors were often expanded with red. Red, however, was initially a difficult color for Delftware painters to fire; the metal oxides that gave the color to the glazes could not withstand the high temperatures of the kiln. In order to achieve a red decoration, De Paauw used the cold-painting technique. In this technique, a red lacquer paint was applied to the decoration after the blue, green and yellow paints had been fired.

The present charger shows the earliest stages of the development of colored Delftware: yellow was added to the originally blue color scheme. Such early polychrome objects are extremely rare.

A similar charger is in the Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam (inv. no. A 4556). Two other chargers are in the Terra Verde Collection, and illustrated in Natuurlijke Pracht 2; Een selectie van vormen uit vuur uit de Terra Verde Collectie, 2021, pp. 78 – 81 (inv. nos. TVC 2322 and TVC 2324).

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