Figural porcelains

Most sought after by collectors are figural porcelain pipes. Already in the 1730, shortly after the European invention of the porcelain technique, the first designs appear. The master-modeller of the famous Meissen factory, Johann Joachim Kändler, made one of the most striking examples with three human heads. Another early pipe bowl represents a lion, his head being the lid of the pipe.

The Turkish heads, male and female, both with elaborate turbans, were particularly popular. Expensive gifts at the time, these pipes are very rare nowadays and by consequence high priced.

In course of the nineteenth century the quality of the porcelain pipe declines. Production quantities and competition are both growing. The modelling is no longer refined while the paintings become less naturalistic and subtle. A few manufacturers continue to make examples of fine portrait bowls and delicate figural pipes, but most of the pipes on the market are coarse in shape, crude in painting and vulgar in theme. Especially the animal bowls showing frogs, squirrels, foxes, elephants etc. become popular, although now regarded as super kitsch.

Circa 1900 the figural pipe disappears from the market. The final creations are meant to be smoked in the pub among soldiers or workmen. These bowls are dedicated to drinking and beer. An example shows a man under a barrel, drinking from the tap. Another depicts a low-necked dress woman serving a bunch of beer jugs.

rare lion figure modelled by Johann Joachim Kändler, Meissen, Germany, 1738 oriental lady in a turban, silver lid with a rubin, Königlichen Sächsischen Porzellan-Manufaktur, Meissen, Germany, 1760-1775
bust of a lawyer, the stub showing a snake, Germany, 1840-1880
gipsy woman with lace cap, the lid and stemholder in silver, Limbach, Germany, 1770-1780
figural pipe bowl of a standing man in long coat and top hat, Germany, 1850-1880
portrait pipe showing the bust of Frederick II of Prussia, Meissen, Germany, 1820-1830
figural pipe bowl of a standing man in long coat and top hat, Germany, 1850-1880
figural pipe bowl as a sitting fox, Germany, 1790-1830
pipe bowl shaped as a sitting bear, Volkstedt, Germany, 1775-1790
finely modelled portrait of a woman in blanc de Chine, the lid shaped as a helmet, France, 1800-1820
portrait of a pipe showing a woman with tricorne hat and cocarne, France?, 1830-1870
pipe bowl shaped lake a chibouc and finely painted with a tzar portrait, Germany, 1830-1850
stummel related pipe bowl wiht on its base a figural portrayal of an architect in biscuit, Fürstenberg, Germany, 1857
robust portrait pipe of a bearded Turc or Arab with large turban and bust in natural colours, France, 1840-1860
sitting guitar player, Bohemian factory, Germany, 1830-1860
a salesman carrying his goods on his back, Bohemian, Germany, 1830-1850
magnificent modelling of a Napoleontic soldier, porcelaine de Paris, France, 1840-1860
naturalistic portrait of a Napoleontic soldier, porcelaine de Paris, France, 1840-1860 Napoleontic soldier from a series of military portraits, porcelaine de Paris, France, 1840-1860
unusual pipe bowl in the shape of an elephant's head, Germany, 1880-1900 figural pipe with a creature between Pan and the devil, Germany, 1840-1860
figural pipe represeneting a sitting cat, Bohemian, Germany, 1820-1840
the bowl of the pipe shaped as a parrot with colourfull painting, Bohemian, Germany, 1880-1900
figural the bowl shaped as a sitting dog, Bohemien, Germany, 1840-1870
remarkable combination of a sitting goat and the head of a man, Germany, 1840-1860
on the lid of this pipe bowl an old man looking at a your couple, Germany, 1860-1880
a hard working monk carrying a heap of hay on his back in which a girl is hidden, Germany, 1840-1870
pipe bowl modeled after a French Gambier, Germany, 1860-1880
nicely depicted portrait of a man, the base of the bowl shows an open human hand, Germany, 1850-1880
bust of a bayard having a movable front of the helmet in sheet metal, Germany, 1860-1880
bust of a military man with fur hat, Bohemian, Germany, 1880-1900
woman on a barrel, holding beer tankards, Bohemian, Germany, 1890-1910
theme drinking: a man drinking from the tap of a barrel, Bohemian, Germany, 1890-1910
portrait pipe bowl of an Egyptian woman in Parian ware in greenish blue, Germany, 1890-1910 woman portrait in pink Parian ware showing Jugendstill charcateristics, Germany, 1890-1910
porcelain pipe in biscuit the bowl showing a man's head with rimmed hat, Germany, 1860-1880
All objects on this page are part of the Amsterdam Pipe Museum
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