Eighteenth-century Europe’s passion for Asian goods led to the import of porcelain, lacquer, silk, and wallpaper and to a strong East Asian influence on European manufactories. Where Meissen faithfully reproduced Asian forms and decoration, Du Paquier was more innovative.
The round tureen derives from Chinese prototypes but features “Europeanized” handles and finial. The decoration is inspired by Chinese famille verte (green family) colors, and the flower-spray motif draws on elements of Kakiemon, a type of Japanese overglaze enameled porcelain. Indeed, imports into Europe of Japanese lacquers, textiles, and porcelain also left their mark on Du Paquier. Japanese Imari ware, with its extensive floral motifs painted in radiant blue, iron-red, and gold, was greatly admired in Vienna. Imitations appear on many pieces, as on the small tureen, as well as on the dishes, the fan shape of which was also inspired by Japanese porcelain.
Variations on Chinese motifs played an important role in the decoration of Du Paquier porcelain as well. The large tray, probably part of a missing tea service, is inspired by Chinese porcelain decorated with little boys at play.
The Du Paquier manufactory also found inspiration in European precedents, notably the chinoiserie scenes developed at Meissen by Johann Gregor Höroldt, a young artist who began his career at the Du Paquier manufactory but left in 1720 to find fame in Saxony. There, he developed Meissen’s distinctive style, including colorful miniature scenes — depicting life in China as imagined by Europeans, all set in reserves and framed with fine ornaments.