Architectural ceramics

The decorative panels entitled "Music", "Painting" and "Flowers", produced by the Lœbnitz earthenware factory, have recently joined the exhibits at the Museum of Ceramics in Rouen. These reliefs were the object of a restoration project by Juliette Dupin and Béatrice Beillard (restorers for the Museums of France). Museum visitors accustomed to plates and ornamental pieces are thus given a different perception of ceramics with these panels, which reflect the 19th-century taste for architectural ceramics (considered the ideal support for original and decorative touches to all manner of buildings).

"Music" and "Painting" were proposed in the Lœbnitz company’s catalogue as architectural decorative panels, no doubt intended to adorn the façades of public buildings. The first examples of this type, presented at the Exhibition of 1884, presented an elegant coloured surface which was enamelled by insufflation (a technique which developed into spray painting). The fully enamelled figures, created from models by the sculptor Allar, stand out against a background of tiles with stamped designs and bunches of grapes in relief. The palette in "Painting" and the cello in "Music" are of terracotta.