A unique capsule exhibition of 37 porcelain dogs, from the Royal Crown Derby Museum collection, has just opened at The Kennel Club Art Gallery in London until 10 January 2024. The collection was curated by The Kennel Club Art Collection Curators and well-known canine artist Deidre Ashdown, who originally proposed the exhibition.
The ceramic dogs are generously on loan from the Royal Crown Derby Museum with pieces from their National Dog Collection and Dogs of the World Series, as well as commemorative pieces, such as the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Corgi.
The detailed models featured in the exhibition represent a long history of porcelain manufacturing in Derby, starting in 1750 with modeller Andrew Planche making small white figures. Planche partnered with decorator William Duesbury and the pair opened a factory on Nottingham Road. The factory gained popularity among customers and even royal attention from King George III who went on to grant them the name Crown Derby Porcelain. Unfortunately, hard times hit and the factory moved to a smaller premises on King Steet, but they continued to create their classic designs for their customers. In 1878 a new porcelain factory opened nearby; while they were initially competitors, the two businesses then merged in 1935 and became the factory known and still running today - Royal Crown Derby.
18 of the dogs in the exhibition were made in the King Street factory between 1848 to 1935 and are praised for their lifelike characteristics of the breeds – with lounging Greyhounds, alert Pointers and cheerful Terriers all making an appearance.
Marianne Walker, Art Collection Curator from The Kennel Club, said: “We're very excited to welcome these 37 porcelain dogs on loan from their historic roots in Derby and hope that as many people as possible will take the opportunity to see them while they are on display in London.
“We would also like to thank Deidre Ashdown and Elizabeth Woledge, Director of The Royal Crown Derby Museum for collaborating on us with this special capsule exhibition.”
The exhibition is open to the public until 10 January 2024 at The Kennel Club Art Gallery at 10 Clarges Street, Mayfair, W1J 8AB, from Monday to Friday between 9.30am to 4.30pm.
To book your visit,The Kennel Club Art Gallery or call 020 7518 1064.