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Meissen Porcelain Vases

Meissen Porcelain (Germany, 1710–)
Meissen Porcelain (Germany, 1710–)

Meissen Porcelain (Staatliche Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen) is one of the preeminent porcelain factories in Europe and was the first to produce true porcelain outside of Asia. It was established in 1710 under the auspices of King Augustus II “the Strong” of Saxony-Poland (1670–1733), a keen collector of Asian ceramics, particularly Ming porcelain. In pursuing his passion, which he termed his “maladie de porcelaine,” Augustus spent vast sums, amassing some 20,000 pieces of Japanese and Chinese ceramics. These, along with examples of early Meissen, comprise the Porzellansammlung, or porcelain collection, of the Zwinger Palace, in Dresden.

The king was determined, however, to free the European market from its dependence on Asian imports and to give European artisans the freedom to create their own porcelain designs. To this end, he charged the scientist Ehrenfried Walther von Tschirnhaus and aspiring alchemist Johann Friedrich Böttger with the task of using local materials to produce true, hard-paste porcelain (as opposed to the soft-paste variety European ceramists in the Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy and Spain had been producing since the late Renaissance). In 1709, the pair succeeded in doing just that, employing kaolin, or “china clay.” A year later, the Meissen factory was born.

In its first decades, Meissen mostly looked to Asian models, producing wares based on Japanese Kakiemon ceramics and pieces with Chinese-inflected decorations, called chinoiseries. During the 1720s its painters drew inspiration from the works of Watteau, and the scenes of courtly life, fruits and flowers that adorned fashionable textiles and wallpaper. It was in this period that Meissen introduced its famous cobalt-blue crossed swords logo—derived from the arms of the Elector of Saxony as Arch-Marshal of the Holy Roman Empire—to distinguish its products from those of competing factories that were beginning to spring up around Europe.

By the 1730s, Meissen’s modelers and decorators had mastered the style of Asian ceramics, and Augustus encouraged them to develop a new, original aesthetic. The factory’s director, Count Heinrich von Brühl, used Johann Wilhelm Weinmann’s botanical drawings as the basis for a new line of wares with European-style surface decoration. The Blue Onion pattern (Zwiebelmuster), first produced in 1739, melded Asian and European influences, closely following patterns used in Chinese underglaze-blue porcelain, but replacing exotic flora and fruits with Western varieties (likely peaches and pomegranates, not onions) along with peonies and asters.

During the same period, head modeler Joachim Kändler (1706–75) began crafting delicate porcelain figures derived from the Italian commedia dell’arte. Often used as centerpieces on banquet tables and decorated to reflect the latest fashions in courtly dress for men and women, these figurines, they were popular in their day, and are still considered among of Meissen’s most iconic creations. Kändler also created the Swan Service, which, with its complex low-relief surface design and minimal decoration is considered a masterpiece of Baroque ceramics.

The rise of Neoclassicism in the latter half of the 18th century forced Meissen to change artistic direction and begin producing monumental vases, clocks, chandeliers and candelabra. In the 20th century, Meissen added to its 18th-century repertoire decidedly modern designs, including ones in the Art Nouveau style. The 1920s saw the introduction of numerous animal figures, such as the popular sea otter (Fischotter), which graced an East German postage stamp in the 1960s. Starting in 1933, artistic freedom was limited at the factory under the Nazi regime, and after World War II, when the region became part of East Germany, it struggled to reconcile its elite past with the values of the Communist government. In 1969, however, new artistic director Karl Petermann reintroduced the early designs and fostered a new degree of artistic license. Meissen became one of the few companies to prosper in East Germany.

Owned by the State of Saxony since reunification, in 1990, Meissen continues to produce its classic designs together with new ones developed collaboratively with artists from all over the world. In addition, through its artCAMPUS program, the factory has invited distinguished ceramic artists, such as Chris Antemann and Arlene Shechet, to work in its studios in collaboration with its skilled modelers and painters. The resulting works of contemporary sculpture are inspired by Meissen’s rich and complex legacy.

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19th Century Meissen Porcelain Schneeballen Snowball Vase with Meissen Birds
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
A fabulous and large 19th century Louis XVI Style Meissen Porcelain Schneeballen snowball vase decorated with vines, flowers, and Meissen birds. The vase is of bulbous-ovoid form, th...
Category

1870s German Louis XVI Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Vase with Different Flower Bouquets on Either Side and Snake Handles
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Boston, MA
I want to offer you this wonderful cobalt Meissen vase with different lovely hand painted flower bouquets on either side with snake shaped handles. This Meissen vase is one of the Me...
Category

1890s German Neoclassical Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Cabinet Vase with Applied Fruits and Flowers
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
Meissen cabinet vase with applied fruits and flowers, exquisite gourd bottle shape with numerous applied fruits and flowers, and painted with insects. Various all-over minor damages,...
Category

Late 19th Century German Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Cookie Jar
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Vilnius, LT
Meissen porcelain cookie jar with lid, hand painted flowers and gold decor.  
Category

Mid-20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain, Porcelain, Porcelain

Important Pair of Meissen Porcelain Filigree Vases with Raised Flowers
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
Category

1750s German Louis XV Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Vase
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Vilnius, LT
Meissen Porcelain vase with hand decorated gold ornaments.
Category

Mid-20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain, Porcelain, Porcelain

Pair of Meissen Late 19th Century Vases with Watteau Style Paintings
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Boston, MA
Pair of very special Meissen vases with Watteau scenes of lovers. These would be a beautiful decoration for your home on your mantle, on a center table or with a mirror behind them. ...
Category

Late 19th Century German Romantic Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Pair of Meissen Vases with Snake Handles and Different Fruit Paintings
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Boston, MA
Pair of Meissen vases with snake handles and different still life paintings of fruit on all four sides. The paintings of fruit on these vases are so well done that the fruits look re...
Category

Late 19th Century German Neoclassical Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

"Frolicking in the Waves," Art Deco Porcelain Vase with Nudes by Meissen
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Philadelphia, PA
Rare and lovely, this flaring porcelain vase designed by Rudi Stolle for the famed Meissen Porcelain works depicts a bas relief frieze of nude nymphs and tritons frolicking in the oc...
Category

1940s German Art Deco Vintage Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Vase
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Vilnius, LT
Meissen Porcelain vase with hand painted flowers decorated with gold ornaments.
Category

Mid-20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain, Porcelain, Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Pot-Pourri Vase, Germany, 19th Century
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires
Meissen porcelain pot-pourri vase, Germany, 19th century.
Category

Late 19th Century German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Museum Quality Meissen Porcelain Cobalt-Blue Krater Pate sur Pate Vase
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
Category

Mid-19th Century German Neoclassical Revival Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Early 20th Century Vase in White Porcelain by Meissen with Rose Decoration
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in CH
Tall fine vase in white porcelain with rose decoration by Meissen. Marked at the bottom. Great condition. Germany, circa 1920.
Category

Early 20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Porcelain Vase Designed by Hans Merz for Meissen, 1950
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in CH
A porcelain vase designed by Hans Merz for Meissen, circa 1950 Measures: Height 32.5cm.
Category

1950s German Mid-Century Modern Vintage Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Pair of German Porcelain Vases, Meissen, circa 1745
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
Pair of German porcelain vases, Meissen, circa 1745.
Category

Mid-18th Century German Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Three-Vase Garniture with Ormolu Mounts
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in London, GB
This striking three-vase garniture contains 18th century Meissen porcelain and 19th century French gilt bronze mounts. The vases are of baluster form. The decorative scheme of the po...
Category

Late 18th Century German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Bronze, Ormolu

Pair of Antique Meissen Hand-Painted Porcelain Potpourri Urns or Vases
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Charleston, SC
Pair of exceptional quality 18th century Antique Meissen hand painted porcelain potpourri urns or vases with period bocage lids. Note the exceptional bocage work on the floral clu...
Category

Mid-18th Century German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Antique Painted and Parcel Gilt Porcelain Vase by Meissen
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in London, GB
This beautiful vase was created by the world-famous Meissen porcelain factory. Meissen was established in the early 18th century, making it the first producer of hard-paste porcelain...
Category

19th Century German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain, Porcelain

Meissen Pate Sur Pate Vase of a Neoclassical Maiden Seated on Centaur
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
A 19th century Royal Cobalt Blue Meissen Pate Sur Pate vase of a Maiden seated on a Centaur. Beautifully decorated in cobalt blue, salmon pink, 24-karat brushed gilt decoration and t...
Category

1860s German Neoclassical Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Antique Meissen Groupings of Children Holding Cornucopia Vases Pair, circa 1860
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
A fine and quite unusual pair of large antique Meissen porcelain groupings, with each cornucopia carried by two Meissen children / cupids, all in different positions. Finely decorate...
Category

1860s German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Pear Shaped Meissen Vase with Cover and Vines with Flowers and Fruits
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New York, NY
Category

1810s German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Covered Figural Vase, 1774-1815 B
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Washington Crossing, PA
Meissen covered figural vase, 1774-1815, With blue underglazed crossed swords and star mark to undersides. Measures: H 17 1/2 in.
Category

Late 18th Century Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Pair of Porcelain Meissen Cobalt Blue Vases, 1960
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in CH
Pair of vases, porcelain, cobalt blue walls with fine and broad margins of gold, on the front a reserve with a colorfully painted bouquet on a white background, framed by golden leav...
Category

1960s Austrian Baroque Vintage Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Snakes Handle Vase, 1st Quality, Cobalt and Gold Painting
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Berlin, DE
Meissen Porcelain snakes handle vase. 1st quality. Cobalt and gold painting.  
Category

20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Snakes Handle Vase, 1st Quality, Cobalt and Gold Painting
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Berlin, DE
Meissen porcelain snakes handle vase. 1st quality. Cobalt and gold painting. Small chip on the socket.
Category

20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Pair of Signed Meissen Lemon Yellow Hand-Painted Botanical Vases
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Great Barrington, MA
This lovely pair of signed Meissen vases are beautifully painted on both front and back with Dutch floral bouquets. The crisp white background with vibrant yellow, provides contrast ...
Category

Early 20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain, Porcelain

Large White and Gold Meissen Vase with Serpent Handles Mounted as a Lamp
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in London, GB
A very fine large white and gold Meissen vase in the form of an urn. The vase highlighted with gilt decoration and with elaborate serpent handles issuing from acanthus leaf terminals...
Category

Late 19th Century French Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

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Important Pair of Meissen Porcelain Filigree Vases with Raised Flowers
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Pair of 19th Century Meissen Porcelain Cupid Centerpieces with Baskets
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19th Century Meissen Porcelain Group of Three Card Players Gallant Figures
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1860s German Louis XVI Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Museum Quality Meissen Porcelain Cobalt-Blue Krater Pate sur Pate Vase
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Pair of Meissen Schneeballen and Intricately Ormolu-Mounted Potpourri Vases
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Magnificent and Rare 19th Century Life-Sized Meissen Porcelain, Turkey
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1860s German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Porcelain

Pear Shaped Meissen Vase with Cover and Vines with Flowers and Fruits
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1810s German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Pair of Antique 19th Century Japanese Porcelain Multicolored Lacquered Vases
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Porcelain

Large Pair of 19th Century Meissen Porcelain Figures of Lovers Singing
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19th Century Blue & White Chinese Porcelain Bangchui Ping Form Vases, Pair
Located in New York, NY
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Materials

Porcelain

Fine 19th Century French Sèvres Style Porcelain & Doré Bronze-Mounted Ewers
By Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres
Located in New York, NY
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1860s French Louis XVI Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Bronze, Porcelain

Previously Available Items
Pair of 19th Century Meissen Flower Encrusted Vases
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Brighton, Sussex
A very good quality pair of 19th century Meissen Porcelain flower encrusted vases, each with a white basket weave ground, wonderful brightly colored flowers and fruit. Signed to the...
Category

Late 19th Century German Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

Four Elements Porcelain Ewers by Meissen
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New Orleans, LA
This extremely rare and important set of Meissen ewers represents the Four Elements: Earth, Air, Water and Fire. Impressive in both size and artistry, they are among the most famous ...
Category

18th Century German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

  • Four Elements Porcelain Ewers by Meissen
  • Four Elements Porcelain Ewers by Meissen
  • Four Elements Porcelain Ewers by Meissen
  • Four Elements Porcelain Ewers by Meissen
H 26 in. W 17 in. D 9.5 in.
Pair of Meissen Mayflower Vases
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in New Orleans, LA
This spectacular pair of Meissen "Mayflower" vases truly epitomizes the majesty of Meissen porcelain. Modeled after a pair originally designed by master craftsman Johann Joachim Kaen...
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19th Century German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Porcelain

Meissen Covered Figural Vase, 1774-1815
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Washington Crossing, PA
Meissen covered figural vase, 1774-1815, With blue underglazed crossed swords and star mark to undersides. (2). Measures: H 17 1/2 in.
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Late 18th Century Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

  • Meissen Covered Figural Vase, 1774-1815
  • Meissen Covered Figural Vase, 1774-1815
  • Meissen Covered Figural Vase, 1774-1815
  • Meissen Covered Figural Vase, 1774-1815
H 17.5 in. W 6 in. D 6 in.
Meissen Neoclassical Style Porcelain Vase with Snake Handles, circa 1870
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Pittsburgh, PA
Meissen porcelain vase, Germany, mid-late 19th century, with scrolled snake handles, gilding to rim, handle terminals, lower body and socle, crossed swords marks, ht. 15 3/8 inches t...
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1870s German Neoclassical Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Porcelain

Meissen White Porcelain Modernist Vase
By Meissen Porcelain, Ludwig Zepner
Located in Chicago, IL
A white porcelain vase with modern abstract tree motif by Meissen. Gloss glazed porcelain. Marked with crossed swords and style numbers to bottom.
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1980s German Mid-Century Modern Vintage Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain

  • Meissen White Porcelain Modernist Vase
  • Meissen White Porcelain Modernist Vase
  • Meissen White Porcelain Modernist Vase
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H 11.5 in. W 5 in. D 4 in.
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Porcelain

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H 32 in. W 15 in. D 15 in.
Pair of Meissen Flower Encrusted Covered Vases
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Located in New York, NY
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1880s German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

Antique German Meissen Porcelain Figural Cherub and Rose Bud Vase, circa 1890
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Located in Big Flats, NY
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19th Century German Victorian Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Porcelain

Meissen Porcelain Vase
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Vilnius, LT
Meissen Porcelain vase with hand painted flowers and decorated gold ornaments.
Category

Mid-20th Century German Meissen Porcelain Vases

Materials

Porcelain, Porcelain, Porcelain

  • Meissen Porcelain Vase
  • Meissen Porcelain Vase
  • Meissen Porcelain Vase
  • Meissen Porcelain Vase
H 9.65 in. Dm 7.29 in.
Meissen Brule Parfum Lidded Vase, Rococo Period circa 1745
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Vienna, AT
Meissen Gorgeous so-said Brule Parfum Lidded Vase height: 20 cm ( = circa 8.0 inches ) diameter of base: 9.0 cm ( = circa 3.6 inches ) Manufactory: Meiss...
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1740s German Rococo Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Porcelain

18th Century Meissen Great Vase Porcelain, Snowball, Marcolini Period
By Meissen Porcelain
Located in Valladolid, ES
One of a kind, unique piece, great Vase with a lid by Jacob Petit, a French artist who made spectacularly striking pieces like this one. This technique and decorative style made in t...
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1790s German Baroque Antique Meissen Porcelain Vases

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Porcelain