Sculpting Lladro Figurine

The creation of a Lladro figurine is a complex task carried out collectively. Every piece in your collection required the work and talents of many artisans and artists, who all played their parts in the multiple stages of the creation process. All of these stages are equally important, because even the smallest mistake during this process would produce a fatal flaw. But if there is one defining moment on which everything hinges, it would be the origin of the piece itself. Where does the idea for a new Lladro figurine come from? What source of inspiration do Lladro artists use? What is the secret to creating such an extensive, varied and yet coherent range of porcelains. To answer these questions we must look at the group of creative collaborators that work at Lladro's Porcelain City, and the close ties that exist between this group and the Lladro family.

Creating Lladro Porcelain Statues

>Ever since the three founders decided to pool their talents back in the nineteen forties, the relationship they have maintained with their collaborators has been close and fruitful. The Lladro brothers have played the master to men of mastery, they have been mentors to disciples who have become inspired artists, and they have guided the steps of many talented people who have joined the staff. While advancing together along the creative path, they perfected their skills in porcelain art, generating new and exciting experiences together. This degree of understanding and synergy has become so intense that it is virtually impossible to pinpoint the author of a single creation.

Everyone is involved. Everyone shares the same sources of inspiration, the same artistic concerns, the same means of expression. Lladro creations are born in this inspiring atmosphere which exists in Porcelain City. All collaborators are consummate artists, draftsmen and sculptors who apply their extraordinary powers of imagination, sensitivity and technical mastery.. Moreover, they share the Lladro family's concern for excellence in workmanship. Their natural curiosity urges them to continue the search for new themes, new creative challenges.

Making Lladro Figurines

The atmosphere in the Lladro studios is, in many ways, very similar to that of Renaissance workshops, where skills and knowledge were passed on from masters to disciples due to intense and enriching personal relationships. These relationships formed from years of artistic creation form the backbone of everything Lladro strives to create.

The starting point for the creation of a Lladro figurine is an idea - an idea whose inspiration is taken, perhaps, from the history of art, from nature, or day to day life. Many themes can be taken and turned into a new figurine. With their special feel for art, the Lladro family inspires their sculptors and collaborators to transform a bare idea, into a work of art in porcelain. Taking that initial idea, the sculptor makes a mockup in clay or Plasticine. This rough model has to pass a very difficult test. This is none other than pleasing the discerning eyes of the Lladro family in a detailed inspection.

Creating Lladro Porcelain

Once the piece has been approved, the sculptor re-models it in greater detail, calculating the final size by allowing for the natural shrinkage that will occur during the firing process. Once it is finished, the prototype is forwarded to the Technical Department. Here, specialists carefully examine the figurine and painstakingly divide it into segments, before reproducing these separate pieces in alabaster. The pieces are later reassembled to form an exact reproduction, which is sent back to the sculptor again so that he can re-work the piece to fill in all the fine details. The result is the final model, which now continues its journey to the Ornamentation Department, where artists decorate it with the effects prescribed by the sculptor. All the delicate details are engraved on the piece to give it the required appearance.

Sculptors and artists are linked by mutual understanding and an intuitive grasp of the creation in hand. Everything depends on this vital form of artistic communication, because the Lladro figurine decorators have the difficult task of completing a job initiated by others. Men and women working in this department come from the Faculty of Fine Arts, or have attended the San Carlos School of Arts and Crafts in Valencia. This is the same institution where the Lladro brothers themselves were trained half a century ago. Some of the staff have classical training, some are self taught, but all are excellent draftsmen.

Their task is painstaking and complicated. They know they must get the feel of each creation; they must find that kind of harmony which exists between the individual parts and the complete creation, between the ornamental and the expressive. They know they have to achieve a balanced result. The decision concerning which motifs to give to each piece is part of the sculptor's job, but the factors influencing the final result are shared ideas, documentation on the theme in question, and creative imagination.

Once these tasks have been concluded, the new creation presents all its innate beauty. Nevertheless, it still has to pass a number of trials before it can become an authentic Lladro figurine, highlighted by the delicate nuances of Lladro color and the subtle qualities of fine porcelain. Each new figurine, just a little more than its predecessors, enriches that fascinating world of fantasy and imagination that comes to life in the hands of Lladro sculptors. New characters, new situations, and many well-know sentiments whose aim is to continue surprising all Lladro porcelain art lovers throughout the entire world.

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