Loan items for “White Gold”
The Meissen Porcelain Foundation participated with numerous loan items in a travelling exhibition in China. The Shanghai History Museum organised the exhibition on European porcelain history. The largest objects originated from the collection held by the Meissen Porcelain Foundation. A potpourri vase some three feet tall and a ten-piece “Labours of Hercules” table centre were required to undertake a very long journey indeed. The Chinese curators selected a total of 33 items from the Meissen Porcelain Museum collection with the aim of retracing porcelain’s route to Europe. They shone forth in all their glory in a travelling exhibition entitled “White Gold. East and West Porcelain Capitals. Jingdezhen/Meißen Porcelain Exhibition” that ran from 2019 to 2021.
Two places, one tradition
The Chinese porcelain capital of Jingdezhen was established over a thousand years ago, during the Song Dynasty. Premium porcelain has been produced there since the year 1004. Europe’s first porcelain manufactory was installed in the Albrechtsburg hill-top castle at Meissen over 700 years later, in 1710. The municipalities of Jingdezhen and Meissen have both maintained an unbroken tradition of porcelain production ever since. A catalogue in Chinese and English accompanied the exhibition.
Half a million visitors and a great many porcelain crates
In all, eight museums participated in the “White Gold” exhibition as venues and/or loaning institutions: two from Germany, five from China and one from Japan. It was ceremoniously opened at the Shanghai History Museum in 2019. The show then moved on via stopovers in the Dalian Museum, the Guangzhou Museum and the Zhengzhou Museum to the Jiangxi Provincial Museum opened in 2021. The exhibition came to a glorious conclusion here, in the heart of the Chinese porcelain region of Jingdezhen in Jiangxi Province. Half a million people attended the travelling exhibition in all. The items in Meissen porcelain travelled well over 3,000 miles within China alone and were unpacked six and repacked five times.