About Royal Copenhagen (Manufacturer)
Producers of the finest in Danish porcelain, Royal Copenhagen is a company steeped in tradition. Its celebrated blue-and-white china patterns as well as its famed hallmark depicting the royal crown and three waves—symbolizing the monarch who founded the company and the three major waterways of Denmark—are emblems of master craftsmanship.
Royal Copenhagen was founded in 1775 by Queen Juliane Marie. Years earlier, after the death of her husband, King Frederick V, Juliane’s stepson ascended the throne. Shortly into his reign, he went insane, and the Queen became the head of Denmark and its small empire. She sought to improve Denmark’s economy and founded factories around the country to promote domestic growth and international trade. Royal Copenhagen was one of the first of these. Royal Copenhagen first made dinnerware and vases with blue-and-white motifs inspired by Chinese porcelain, then the rage in aristocratic Europe. Many of these designs are still made today.
Apart from its classic patterns, Royal Copenhagen has adapted to the changing styles of time and appeals to many different tastes. Their prolific body of work includes Rococo-style porcelain statues that incorporate stylistic floral patterns in an Art Nouveau style, as well as modern vases by such noted 20th century Danish ceramists as Axel Salto. Whether used for special occasions or displayed as part of a design collection, Royal Copenhagen pieces represent a legacy of the highest quality.
Christian Thomsen (1860–1921)
The renowned Danish sculptor was employed by the Royal Porcelain Manufactory Royal Copenhagen from 1898, and is considered one of the most influential royal Danish sculptors of the 20th century. He produced over 100 figurines, including figures from Hans Christian Anderson’s fairy tales, animals, and 36 commemorative plaques; it was Thomsen who produced the popular Danish Christmas plates in 1908.