Our latest acquisition

The ‘Théière Chinoise Ronde’

The Chitra Collection recently acquired this beautiful teapot made by the famous French porcelain factory Sèvres in 1846. Known as the ‘théière Chinoise ronde’(Chinese round teapot), the form was designed by the renowned painter and designer, Alexandre-Evariste Fragonard, in 1831-1832. The striking design demonstrates the European vogue for exoticism at this time and, the director of the factory, Alexandre Brongniart’s fascination with Eastern design.

A drawing of 1832 by Fragonard is preserved in the archives at Sèvres, in which the Asian-inspired form is decorated with chinoiserie figures. Only 11 examples of this form were produced between 1832 and 1846, all as single pieces without accompanying tea wares and this example, dated 1846, was probably one of the last made at the manufactory. An example of this model, dated 1832, and sold to Queen Marie-Amélie of France in 1837 is now in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (accession  no. 2007.408a,b).