Flambé-Glazed Vase - Art by Edmond Lachenal
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Edmond Lachenal
Flambé-Glazed Vase

ca 1900


Lachenal’s vase explores the gorgeous abstract effects of process itself every bit as dramatically as it captures a moment in time. It is a cascade of color held in perfect tension. As one of the pivotal figures of the Art Nouveau, Edmond Lachenal revivifies Chinese vase form and flambe glazes to suit a contemporary context. Modifying the traditional form at the shoulders and lip by creating a floral motif arrested in motion with petals just beginning to unfurl, Lachenal captures a mood or a moment in a natural setting. His murky sang de boeuf, applied heavily over the cream underglaze at the top of the vase, gives way to more subtle treatment to produce a sense of solidity, as if alternating layers of colored sands had settled into place. Delicate blue lines tracing the heart and tulip shapes terminate in a dramatic free-fall. Upon close inspection, areas of white over-glazing reveal yet another dimension of color to produce a mottled effect in blues and purples. As a leader of a new artistic movement, Lachenal moved away from imitation to create something new. Though quite taken by the eastern aesthetic, Lachenal’s heart beat to the energetic and bombastic chords of La Marseillaise. Made shortly after the French Republic’s centennial, Lachenal’s tall vase is indeed remarkable for its sensual boldness in bleu, blanc et rouge; it is a striking symbol of national pride. EDMOND LACHENAL (1855-1948) One of France’s most influential ceramists, Edmond Lachenal contributed significantly to the development of Art Nouveau. His poor beginnings in Paris led to an apprenticeship at age 12 with a local potter. In 1870, he began working in the studio of leading ceramist, Theodore Deck. Lachenal was a quick study and by 1873, he had demonstrated considerable talent to be appointed Director of Decoration in Deck’s studio as well as receiving an Honorable Mention at the World’s Fair in Vienna. By 1881 Lachenal had opened his own studio with his wife and fellow ceramist, Anne Le Cloarec, in Paris’ Auteuil neighborhood where there was a high concentration of ceramic production and artistic exchange. He subsequently moved his studio production outside of Paris; however his impact on the artistic capital only increased with time. He won gold medals there in 1889 and 1900 at the Expositions Universelle. By the early-1900s, large exhibitions of his work were held at the Osterreischisches Museum fur angewande Kunst in Vienna and Munich and at Louis Majerelle’s new Paris showrooms at the former site of Bing’s Maison de l’Art Nouveau. It was his breadth and range that set him apart from other contemporary artists working in the field. He worked in faience and stoneware, and he collaborated with sculptors to produce ceramic versions of their work. His oeuvre included applied experimental decorative ceramic styles as well as masterful sculpted organic models which reflected the evolving trend of Japonisme. Lachenal’s creative solutions of utilizing hydrofluoric acid to remove the outer layer of glazes in order to create a velvety matte finish became his hallmark email mat veloute. As a harbinger and master of the Art Nouveau style, Lachenal’s ceramic work moved french ceramics from an appreciative replication of the natural world influenced by the arts from Japan to a fully actualized aesthetic in which artistic process and form expressed these higher laws found in nature. Lachenal leaves an incredible legacy.


  • Artist
    Edmond Lachenal (1855 - 1948, French)
  • Creation Year
    ca 1900
  • Medium
  • Movement & Style
  • Condition
  • Condition Details
    Signed "Lachenal". Featured in the Book "Edmond Lachenal and his Legacy" pg 96. Featured in "Art & Antiques" magazine: Summer 2017, pg 47.
  • Dimensions
    H 17 in. x W 5.5 in.H 43.18 cm x W 13.97 cm
  • Gallery Location
    Chicago, IL
  • Reference Number
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About the Seller

5 / 5
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Located in Chicago, IL
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