The Shepherdess and her Lamb
As much as I love 19th Century porcelain, it is when I come across beautiful 18th Century items from the early British potteries that I get most excited. Today I have something very beautiful: a Chelsea-Derby figure of a shepherdess with her lamb.
(and there will be more figures like these soon!)
These items are not what they seem: we all know the romantic sentimental figures, usually of bad taste, that we saw in the display cabinet of some old aunt when we were children. But these items had a serious function: they would adorn the table during dessert, guiding the discussion of the guests and giving coded messages about the host and his or her interests.
Watch the YouTube video to hear the whole story, including what "Chelsea-Derby" means!
In an early Industrial Revolution world full of political turmoil, when people felt threatened by the rate of progress, rural scenes became very popular - like the French Empress Marie Antoinette you could escape in an imaginary world of a garden full of innocent creatures.
This little shepherdess is made with superb artistry, in tender embrace with her lamb whom she has made a flower garland for. Every detail is perfect and applied with utmost love and care and every time I see this figurine I just melt.
You can find this beautiful shepherdess and her lamb in my shop, alongside many other treasures... and let me know what you think!