ARTIST / MAKER: Vezzi porcelain factory (manufacturer, attributed to)
DATE: 1720-1727 (made)
PLACE: Venice (made)
MATERIALS AND TECHNIQUES: Porcelain painted in overglaze enamels and gilt

The Vezzi manufactory was one of the earliest in Europe to follow Meissen’s lead in producing true, hard-paste porcelain. The factory was founded in Venice by the politician and courtier Giovanni Vezzi in 1720, who tempted skilled technicians, alchemists and craftsmen with the promise of higher pay to help him establish the factory. His business partner was in fact a gilder from the Du Paquier porcelain factory (Austria), Christoph Conrad Hunger. Hunger was able to contribute two key elements: access to the same kaolin clay deposits in Saxony that were used in Meissen and Du Paquier porcelain and experience in the complex science of coloured enamels. The Vezzi factory was in operation for just seven years, and mainly produced tea and coffee wares and small, decorative objects for domestic use.
Because Vezzi was one of the earliest European porcelain factories in existence, the repertoire of forms, designs and decoration used at the factory was limited to that which was produced at Meissen and Du Paquier, as well as Chinese and Japanese export porcelain. The faceted form of this teapot and the palette and style, inspired by Japanese Imari decoration, is characteristic of the experimental porcelain produced by the factory which was influenced simultaneously by the fashion for Asian styles and by European silver. The teapot’s angular handle and use of crisply moulded ornament reflect European silversmithing designs.