Esteemed masters of porcelain Lladro have entered into 2018 with a fresh new rebrand, and with it the company have shared a poetical new look at the processes that bring the characteristic designs to life. Offering a glimpse inside the brand’s factory in Valencia, Spain, Lladro have shone a new light on the loving care and attention of their handcrafted techniques.
From chemistry to modelling, as well as carving, etching, painting, and beyond, Lladro functions with a team of expert artists and designers who strive to keep alive the ancient crafts and methods of turning porcelain into dreams.
The birth of a Lladró porcelain begins with the original idea of its author. With their hands and traditional tools, the sculptor gives shape, in clay or plasticine, to an sketch based on their own inspiration and a painstaking process of documentation that, in the case of human figures, it often requires live modelling.
To bring the piece to life, these definitive moulds are filled with liquid porcelain that slowly sets inside. With great care, the artists carefully extract the parts of this magical puzzle and recompose them. The moulds deteriorate with use, so every once in a while it is necessary to re-create them from their original matrix.
Another key moment in this creative phase is the decoration of the piece. With over 4,000 different colours, the Lladró palette is in constant evolution, continuously adding new tonalities created expressly for some pieces.
And finally, the key moment arrives: the firing in the kiln. As the artists say, porcelain is alive and it is in the kiln where the success of each creation will be judged. In the kiln, the piece undergoes temperatures of up to 1,300ºC (2,500ºF) for a whole day and the true Lladró colors come to the surface.
This complex and laborious process is the only one capable of guaranteeing the degree of excellence that has won Lladró worldwide recognition. The search for perfection also extends to quality control, where the finished sculpture undergoes various tests that certify that it fulfils the high standards demanded by the brand.