Talavera Poblana: Four Centuries of a Mexican Ceramic Tradition

61HB0K548HL._SX362_BO1,204,203,200_Talavera Poblana: Four Centuries of a Mexican Ceramic Tradition was an historical survey presenting the history of Mexican Talavera ceramics tin-glazed earthenware, from its Spanish roots through contemporary manifestations. The exhibition’s historical section included objects borrowed from important New York collections, the latter portion presented contemporary interpretations of this traditional medium by Mexican and foreign artists, selected from the collection of the Museo Amparo in Puebla, Mexico.

The show was curated by Margaret Connors McQuad, Assistant Curator of Ceramics and Furniture, at The Hispanic Society of America, New York and included ceramic basins, vases, bowls, drug jars, as well as sculptures of various shapes and sizes.

The early production of Talavera Poblana was primarily influenced by Old World traditions brought over by immigrant ceramists from various parts of Spain. Talavera initially referred to the city of Talavera de la Reina in the Province of Toledo, Spain. Talavera Poblana refers to the tradition of ceramic production in Puebla, Mexico with its unique style that combines motifs and surface decorations from different cultures and origins.

Certified Talavera Pottery

Talavera Plate by Studio Tomas HuertaTrue, certified Talavera pottery is produced in the city of Puebla, in the state of Puebla, Mexico however, high-quality, modern Talavera pottery is also available from factories in other Mexican districts such as Dolores Hidalgo and Guanajuato.

From the time of the Olmecs, between 1200 BC and 600 AD, pottery has been a central part of Mexican life.  Their use of clay, knowledge of primitive firing and coloring techniques, as well as designs was passed down to other cultures that followed.  The Olmecs are considered by many as the mother culture of Mesoamerican civilizations.

Talavera de la Reina, a Spanish village, has long been influential in the world’s knowledge of fine ceramics.  When the Muslims conquered North Africa and moved into Europe, their tin-glazed ceramics, known as Majolica, came to Spain.  Majolica was developed in the Middle East but gained cultural diversity through influences from the Chinese, Italians, Moors and Spanish cultures.  Spanish craftsmen learned and further developed this craft and, in the 16th century, introduced it to Mexico.  The term Talavera is used to describe faithful reproductions of the pottery that is made in Talavera de la Reina, Spain.

When the Spanish introduced their stylized pottery to their recently established colony in Mexico, the local artisans blended these new techniques with their established practices to creat the famous Talavera pottery of Mexico.  It is believed that the first workshop was established in the city of Puebla around 1600 AD.  Puebla became the home of authentic Mexican Talavera and is where the first potter’s guilds were formed to establish standards and regulations for the production of Talavera.

Majolica ceramics, made in the Talavera style, are produced throughout many different regions of Mexico.  These new influences have produced a variety of modern styles and designs that are growing in popularity.  One such area, Dolores Hidalgo, is the home of Artesanias Amora fabrica.  It is considered the best fabrica in the area and produces some of the finest quality modern Talavera in Mexico today.  Although these products do not meet the exacting standards established by the Consejo Regulador de Talavera, they are fine quality modern Talavera pieces a modest prices.

Historical Talavera Information

Talavera Plates from MexicoIn the early 20th century, interest developed in collecting Talavera. In 1904, an American by the name of Emily Johnston de Forrest discovered Talavera on a trip to Mexico. She became interested in collecting the works, so she consulted scholars, local collectors and dealers. Eventually, her collection became the base of what is currently exhibited in theMetropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Her enthusiasm was passed onto Edwin Atlee Barber, the curator of the Pennsylvania Museum of Art. He, too, spent time in Mexico and introduced Talavera into the Pennsylvania museum’s collection. He studied the major stylistic periods and how to distinguish the best examples, publishing a guide in 1908 which is still considered authoritative.

During this time period, important museum collections were being assembled in Mexico as well. One of the earliest and most important was the collection of Francisco Perez Salazer in Mexico City. A bit later, in the 1920s, Franz Mayer, a German-born stockbroker, started his collection. In Puebla, he was considered a bit crazy for buying all of the “old stuff” from the locals. In 1986, the Franz Mayer Museum opened in Mexico City with the largest collection of Talavera Poblana in the world – 726 pieces from the 17th through the 19th century, and some 20th-century pieces by Enrique Luis Ventosa. In Puebla, José Luis Bello y González and his son José Mariano Bello y Acedo sought the advice of Ventosa in starting their collection. They amassed the largest and most important collection in the city which now is housed in the José Luis Bello y González Museum (Bello Museum).

More recently, the Museo de la Talavera (Talavera Museum) has been established in the city of Puebla, with an initial collection of 400 pieces. The museum is dedicated to recounting the origins, history, expansions and variations in the craft. Pieces include some of the simplest and most complex, as well as those representing different eras.

Several temporary and travelling exhibits of certain themes have been created from these permanent collections. One of these was called “El Aguila en la Historia de Mexico” (The Eagle in the History of Mexico). The forty-two-piece exhibit was sponsored by the Senate of Mexico to show how the eagle symbol has been used in the country throughout its history. This exhibit was sponsored in honor of the Bicentennial of Independence in 2010. These ceramics were chosen because of their combination of art and utility. Eagles depicted include that of Mexico’s coat of arms, as well as those of political figures such as José María Morelos y Pavón and Porfirio Díaz, and those used by institutions such as the Royal and Pontifical University of Mexico and the Mexican Senate itself.

Maiolica Pottery – Pass the Talavera Please

MH460a Talavera, in Puebla, Mexico, is a type of Maiolica pottery, which is distinguished by a milky-white glaze. Authentic Talavera pottery only comes from the city of Puebla and the nearby communities of Atlixco, Cholula, and Tecali, because of the quality of the natural clay found there and the tradition of production which goes back to the 16th century. Much of this pottery was decorated only in blue, but colors such as yellow, black, green, orange and mauve have also been used. Maiolica pottery was brought to Mexico by the Spanish in the first century of the colonial period. Production of this ceramic became highly developed in Puebla because of the availability of fine clays and the demand for tiles from the newly established churches and monasteries in the area. The industry had grown sufficiently that by the mid-17th century, standards and guilds had been established which further improved the quality, leading Puebla into what is called the “golden age” of Talavera pottery (from 1650 to 1750).

Some pieces are from the renowned studio of Maximo Huerta, these pieces represent the finest in authentic Talavera. Hand-thrown from the rich soils of Puebla, then fired and finished in a classic blend of precision and artistry, each design is a beautiful work of art. His ginger jars are just exquisite. MH461a - Talavera Plate

A Talavera Ginger Jar by Maximo Huerta exudes true style and grace. Intimately detailed with delicate hand-painted designs, it is a work of art that will become the centerpiece in any space.

Our Talavera planters feature wonderfully intricate floral patterns that will look great with your plants, indoors or out! The ceramic of these Talavera planters is hand-painted in Dolores Hidalgo, Mexico, and embodies all the classic charm of Mexican Talavera. Available in several shapes and sizes, all Talavera planters also feature a convenient drain hole. Let the bright colors and your plants breathe life back into your home decor!

Whether you keep fresh fruit or wax fruit in your house on display, the Talavera fruit bowl is the perfect dish for display. Many of these Talavera fruit bowls can also double as a punch bowl for when you throw parties. Each is handmade and hand-painted by skilled artists in Mexico. By using modern, high-temperature kilns each Talavera fruit bowl is sure to have a strong and durable finish making them crack and chip resistant.

Talavera for Coffee or Tea!

1340651185-tts038aIt’s a beautiful day on the hacienda and a perfect day to bring out the good china right? Not so fast. No need to make your get together or tea party for the girls stuffy and overdone.

The idea is to enjoy the day with attractive and beautifully designed pieces that are not intimidating yet very elegant indeed.

If you are searching for an elegant coffee or tea set to use not only for special occasions, but also for everyday use, then try our handmade Talavera tea and coffee sets. With every set having its own unique design, you are sure to find a coffee set that you will love. These Talavera coffee/tea sets are 100% lead free, microwave safe, and won’t easily chip or crack. Each coffee set is available in a 4, 6, or 8 person setting.

Use the colorful Talavera snack trays to highlight your dining table or any serving area with authentic Mexican style! Each Talavera snack tray is handmade and hand-painted by the artisans of the Tomas Huerta studio. They are great for serving your favorite snacks and hors d’oeuvres or tea sandwiches. Be sure to view the Tomas Huerta studio plates as well to complete a table set! Each authentic snack tray includes an eyelet for wall hanging and is 100% lead free; chip resistant; and microwave, oven, and dishwasher safe and easy to store.

Other items from the Talavera Pottery category, including our Talavera sinks, canisters, planters, andfruit bowls, come from the historic city of Dolores Hidalgo. Every design is painted by hand, and all plates and platters are made with an eyelet on the back for hanging on walls. So whether for home decoration or for day-to-day use in the dining room, our extensive selection of authentic Talavera pottery is sure to make a wonderful addition to your home décor.

Talavera is a type of Maiolica Pottery

Talavera from Puebla MexicoPass the Talavera Please! Talavera, in Puebla, Mexico, is a type of Maiolica pottery, which is distinguished by a milky-white glaze. Authentic Talavera pottery only comes from the city of Puebla and the nearby communities of AtlixcoCholula, and Tecali, because of the quality of the natural clay found there and the tradition of production which goes back to the 16th century.  Much of this pottery was decorated only in blue, but colors such as yellow, black, green, orange and mauve have also been used.  Maiolica pottery was brought to Mexico by the Spanish in the first century of the colonial period. Production of this ceramic became highly developed in Puebla because of the availability of fine clays and the demand for tiles from the newly established churches and monasteries in the area. The industry had grown sufficiently that by the mid-17th century, standards and guilds had been established which further improved the quality, leading Puebla into what is called the “golden age” of Talavera pottery (from 1650 to 1750).

Some pieces are from the renowned studio of Maximo Huerta, these pieces represent the finest in authentic Talavera. Hand-thrown from the rich soils of Puebla, then fired and finished in a classic blend of precision and artistry, each design is a beautiful work of art. His ginger jars are just exquisite.

This Talavera Ginger Jar by Maximo Huerta exudes true style and grace. Intimately detailed with delicate hand-painted designs, it is a work of art that will become the centerpiece in any space.

Our Talavera planters feature wonderfully intricate floral patterns that will look great with your plants, indoors or out! The ceramic of these Talavera planters is hand-painted in Dolores Hidalgo, Mexico, and embodies all the classic charm of Mexican Talavera. Available in several shapes and sizes, all Talavera planters also feature a convenient drain hole. Let the bright colors and your plants breathe life back into your home decor!

Whether you keep fresh fruit or wax fruit in your house on display, the Talavera fruit bowl is the perfect dish for display. Many of these Talavera fruit bowls can also double as a punch bowl for when you throw parties. Each is handmade and hand-painted by skilled artists in Mexico. By using modern, high-temperature kilns each Talavera fruit bowl is sure to have a strong and durable finish making them crack and chip resistant.

 

U.S. Discovery of Talavera on a trip to Mexico

MH456a - Talavera PlateIn the early 20th century, interest developed in collecting Talavera Pottery. In 1904, an American by the name of Emily Johnston de Forrest discovered Talavera on a trip to Mexico. She became interested in collecting the works, so she consulted scholars, local collectors and dealers. Eventually, her collection became the base of what is currently exhibited in theMetropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Her enthusiasm was passed onto Edwin Atlee Barber, the curator of the Pennsylvania Museum of Art. He, too, spent time in Mexico and introduced Talavera into the Pennsylvania museum’s collection. He studied the major stylistic periods and how to distinguish the best examples, publishing a guide in 1908 which is still considered authoritative.

During this time period, important museum collections were being assembled in Mexico as well. One of the earliest and most important was the collection of Francisco Perez Salazer in Mexico City. A bit later, in the 1920s, Franz Mayer, a German-born stockbroker, started his collection. In Puebla, he was considered a bit crazy for buying all of the “old stuff” from the locals. In 1986, the Franz Mayer Museum opened in Mexico City with the largest collection of Talavera Poblana in the world – 726 pieces from the 17th through the 19th century, and some 20th-century pieces by Enrique Luis Ventosa. In Puebla, José Luis Bello y González and his son José Mariano Bello y Acedo sought the advice of Ventosa in starting their collection. They amassed the largest and most important collection in the city which now is housed in the José Luis Bello y González Museum (Bello Museum).

More recently, the Museo de la Talavera (Talavera Museum) has been established in the city of Puebla, with an initial collection of 400 pieces. The museum is dedicated to recounting the origins, history, expansions and variations in the craft. Pieces include some of the simplest and most complex, as well as those representing different eras.

Several temporary and travelling exhibits of certain themes have been created from these permanent collections. One of these was called “El Aguila en la Historia de Mexico” (The Eagle in the History of Mexico). The forty-two-piece exhibit was sponsored by the Senate of Mexico to show how the eagle symbol has been used in the country throughout its history. This exhibit was sponsored in honor of the Bicentennial of Independence in 2010. These ceramics were chosen because of their combination of art and utility. Eagles depicted include that of Mexico’s coat of arms, as well as those of political figures such as José María Morelos y Pavón and Porfirio Díaz, and those used by institutions such as the Royal and Pontifical University of Mexico and the Mexican Senate itself.

Another exhibit in Mexico centered on the creation of maps using Talavera tile. Most tiles during the colonial period were decorated with flowers and landscapes but a significant number were painted to create murals with maps. Those that survive show how a number of cities developed over the colonial period. Eight of the most representative 16th-century Talavera tile maps were at the El Carmen Museum at an exhibit called “Cartografia: Una Vision en Talavera del Mexico Colonial” (Cartography: A Talavera Vision of Colonial Mexico). This exhibit was of reproductions of the originals created by the Talavera de la Luz workshop in Puebla. The chosen maps show the development of Mexico City as well as representations of the Acapulco, Puebla and the Tesuco regions during this time period.

Exhibits have been held outside of Mexico as well. The Museum of the Americas in Spain held an exhibit called “Talaveras de Puebla, Cerámica colonial Mexicana. Siglos XVII a XXI” (Talavera Pottery of Puebla, Mexican colonial ceramics, XVII to 21st centuries). This was a temporary exhibit of 49 pieces, combined with pieces from Spain and China as references. The pieces were loaned by the Franz Mayer Museum and the Bello Museum.

Talavera Pottery

MH458aMajolica ceramics, made in the Talavera style, are produced throughout many different regions of Mexico.  These new influences have produced a variety of modern styles and designs that are growing in popularity.  One such area, Dolores Hidalgo, is the home of Artesanias Amora fabrica.  It is considered the best fabrica in the area and produces some of the finest quality modern Talavera in Mexico today.  Although these products do not meet the exacting standards established by the Consejo Regulador de Talavera, they are fine quality modern Talavera pieces a modest prices.

As we have already discussed, Talavera is fired at very high temperatures making it a very durable product.  We recommend treating your Talavera as you would treat any other fine china product.  If you decide to place it in the dishwasher, use care to ensure that it does not rattle against other pieces during the washing process. It is microwave safe, but use care as it will absorb heat.  The high firing temperatures also make it oven safe.  We recommend placing the piece in the oven when the oven is started and let it warm up with the oven.  With proper care, your Talavera piece will last for years to come!

Origins of Talavera Pottery

Authentic Talavera PlateFrom the time of the Olmecs, between 1200 BC and 600 AD, pottery has been a central part of Mexican life.  Their use of clay, knowledge of primitive firing and coloring techniques, as well as designs was passed down to other cultures that followed.  The Olmecs are considered by many as the mother culture of Mesoamerican civilizations.

Talavera de la Reina, a Spanish village, has long been influential in the world’s knowledge of fine ceramics.  When the Muslims conquered North Africa and moved into Europe, their tin-glazed ceramics, known as Majolica, came to Spain.  Majolica was developed in the Middle East but gained cultural diversity through influences from the Chinese, Italians, Moors and Spanish cultures.  Spanish craftsmen learned and further developed this craft and, in the 16th century, introduced it to Mexico.  The term Talavera is used to describe faithful reproductions of the pottery that is made in Talavera de la Reina, Spain.

When the Spanish introduced their stylized pottery to their recently established colony in Mexico, the local artisans blended these new techniques with their established practices to creat the famous Talavera pottery of Mexico.  It is believed that the first workshop was established in the city of Puebla around 1600 AD.  Puebla became the home of authentic Mexican Talavera and is where the first potter’s guilds were formed to establish standards and regulations for the production of Talavera.

Authentic Talavera Tiles, Pottery and Folk Art

Authentic Talavera Pottery - Fruit BowlAuthentic Talavera Tiles, Pottery and Folk Art - The art of beautifully handcrafted Talavera art has been cultivated for centuries and the extraordinary heritage of the artisans is apparent at a glance. Providing striking accents throughout your home, our wide array of Talavera pieces offer you the opportunity to draw on this legacy as you bring them into your home.

Rustic imperfections in the finish provide a special appeal and our selection of tiles and will bring the colors and allure of Mexico to your home. Accentuate bathrooms, cover the risers on a staircase, create borders and backsplashes in your, use single tiles for coasters or trivets – let your creativity shine as you place them in your home. Secondary sets of pictures are provided to show you nine-tile views, border effects, and geometric pattern options to assist you in your planning.

Alongside the unique figures, alters, and nativity scenes already offered in our collection of Religious Folk Art , several Talavera crosses have recently been added, exquisitely handmade for worship and decoration. Whether you’re searching for a special gift or a highlight for your own home, the true artistry of each piece will shine through – the only difficult part will be choosing the perfect one from among them.