I went back to the British Museum just a few days before it closed due to the epidemics.
It was not as busy as it used to be before the virus changed the limits of personal space. This was not unpleasant, though.
I could take it slowly and enjoy my favorite pieces of Italian pottery, time-traveling back to the Renaissance.
The collection of Italian ceramics hosted by the British Museum is of the utmost importance: most of the pieces date back to the golden age of Italian majolica, the 16th and 17th century, and they come from different regions, offering a rare perspective on the differences in pictorial styles, shapes, and glazes.
I did not take pictures, but I’m copying below a blog post from 2015, with some highlights from the collection.
…. November 2015
A few pictures from my last visit to the British Museum, where a significant collection of Italian ceramics is hosted.
The display is quite unattractive and, in my opinion, not very well organized, but the quality of the pieces is really good and definitely worth a visit.
I took some pictures with my phone – not good quality, but enough to whet your appetite.
Two plates or bowls made in Deruta by Nicola di Pietro Francioli in 1515-1530
New from Francesca Niccacci pottery studio: cool, contemporary design with a traditional twist.
This story is about love and dedication, about beauty and craftsmanship, about history and heritage.
Pio Mellina is a man who turned his passion for antique Italian tiles into a dream and a few years ago the dream came true. He has created “Le Stanze al Genio”, a Museum in Palermo where visitors can explore his huge collection and marvel at the variety of designs, styles and colors. A display of Italic creative genius! Pio has been collecting antique Italian tiles since he was a child. Instead of joining his friend for a soccer match, he searched the little street markets in the old city. Tiles were cheap, as people did not know what to do with them. Sometimes they were just the waste of the renovation of old houses. Pio purchased them and stored them in his parent’s basement.
When the basement was packed with tiles and Pio could no longer locate what he was looking for, he started to organize them and to collect information as well. His studies changed his collecting habits: he learnt to appraise the tiles he found and purchased some very rare pieces. Pio’s wish to have a place of his own where the tiles could be displayed and appreciated by anyone grew over time, just like his collection. In 1998 he bought a flat in an ancient downtown building. He started the renovation with a twofold purpose: it had to be his home as well as the place where all his tiles could be beautifully displayed. In 2008 Pio Mellina’s house and museum was ready and opened to the public. Continue reading