Ceramics at Clandon Park

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Today Clandon Park is home to three ceramics collections. The largest of these is  the Mrs Gubbay Collection and you can see her furniture needlework and porcelain displayed throughout the house.

You can also see two exquisite collections of Commedia dell’Arte, or Italian comedy figures, on loan to the National Trust. These are the Lady Swaythling Collection in the Blue China Room and the Ivo Forde Collection on display in the Marble Hall gallery.  

Mrs Gubbay's magpie tendencies
Mrs Gubbay never bought useful porcelain. Neither was she interested in building a set. Instead she seemed to want each piece for its individual sparkle.

On your visit you can see mainly 18th-century English, French, German and Oriental porcelain, including pieces by: the Bow, Chelsea, Derby, Meissen, Nymphenburg, Frankenthal and Ludwigsburg factories. These are displayed together with a remarkable collection of Chinese 17th and 18th-century porcelain birds.

Lady Swaythling's collection
This collection includes rare examples of Meissen’s ten classic Harlequins, figures and groups from the Commedia dell’Arte series. You can also spot huntsmen and exotic figures inspired by the Orient.

This collection is kindly loaned by Lady Swaythling who is a descendant of Mrs Nellie Ionides who first collected these pieces.

Ivo Forde's passion for porcelain
Ivo Forde aquired his first porcelain figure in 1952. The figure was a Harlequin and this purchase inspired a life-long interest in the early Commedia dell’Arte figures by Kändler. Kändler is considered one of history’s finest porcelain modellers, active at Meissen from 1733-75.

Before his death Ivo Forde decided he would like a collection of 21 of these Meissen figures to be displayed where they could be appreciated by others. The National Trust is delighted that his widow and family have offered the collection on loan to Clandon.