In 1971, Lladro introduced a new porcelain to its assortment. The Gres Collection
possess all the earth tones of the Spanish countryside: Mellow colors from the plains of Castile and the sandstone cliffs of Aragon. Sun drenched shades reflective of Costa de Sol and vivid contrasts ala Andalusia. There are intense colors reminiscent of flower decked floats that characterize Corpus Christi's celebrations; bright flashes of color that recall the fireworks of Valencia's Fallas festival. The warmth of the gres
palette harmonizes with Lladro's sensitive portraits of subjects renowned for their universal appeal.
>The original uses of gres, like many metals, dates back to the times of primitive man, possibly as early as the Stone Age. Eventually it made its way from the Middle East just as medieval Europe was arriving at similar formulas independently.Gres, like stone, earthenware and other ceramic materials are actually compound materials that possess different minerals in varying proportions. Activity intensified in the sixteenth century giving rise to famous gres figurines, arquerias, and masks by Siesburg, Colony and Raeren. Gres as a form of decorative art was firmly established in the Far East and achieved some notoriety in the Nordic countries.
Although glazed porcelain constitutes the most readily recognized works by Lladro, gres has had its place in the collection for over four decades. The pioneer in the use of gres at Lladro was Jose Lladro. His experiments in the 1970's
led to the creation of a series of jugs. Later, gres was proved to have the versatility and flexibility required to create high quality figurines.
Like all Lladro figurines
, each Gres piece is exquisitely crafted by hand. Unlike the white based, hard paste of the traditional collections, gres has a distinctive texture with the slightly porous quality of skin and a palette of lively colors
. The unusual texture and coloration result from a secret blend of porcelain paste and enamel pigments. They evolved after years of trial and error experiments directed by the Lladro brothers with the artists and technicians at Porcelain City
The first Lladro figurines made of gres were inspired by the animal world. Animals were a natural subject for the colonization and texture characterized by this unique material. The artists at Lladro capitalized on the strengths and character of gres to represent figures of owls, partridges, fish, horses, camels, monkeys, and gazelles in early Lladro collections. Eventually the material would be adapted to other themes as well.
Gres, unlike porcelain, includes clay among its components. The clay contributes to the colors and textures of the end product, just as the blend used in traditional porcelain paste contributes to its qualities of refinement. One of the principal differences between gres and traditional Lladro porcelain is the way the colors are achieved
. Enamels are applied in layers on the surface on each piece. The composition of these enamels differs from the paints used to decorate Lladro's traditional porcelain, which is often blended into the porcelain paste itself. The method of applying color to gres results in variations and shadings that make each piece unique and differs from the smooth, more uniformed colors of the traditional Lladro style.
The gres palette has evolved through years of experiments at the Porcelain City laboratories. The current selection of colors available to the artists at Lladro is over 200 hues. The firing of gres
requires close attention to the kiln temperatures. Any deviation in temperature could show as a defect in the temperamental enamels.
The rich colors of gres make it the perfect accent for decorating in any style home, contemporary or traditional. Just as its colors provide an exciting focal point for a room, its widely varying themes suit individual tastes. Gres figurines have impact appropriate to decorative furnishings. Powerful religious statements are achieved with the unique qualities of gres porcelain. The Lladro Gres Collection
remains as fresh and lively as its colorful palette.Click Here To View Our Selection Of Lladro Porcelain FigurinesClick Here To View More Lladro Figurine Information