The Viennese Porcelain Manufactory, the second oldest in Europe, was founded in 1718. The “white gold” from Vienna has been lovingly moulded and shaped, glazed and painted by hand ever since; every single item of finest Augarten porcelain is just unique now as it was then.
The Manufactory has a very eventful history. May 1718 Emperor Karl VI granted du Paquier (the first owner) the privilege of being the sole porcelain producer in Austria and its crownlands. This is the story behind the foundation of Europes second-oldest porcelain manufactory in Vienna.
In 1744, the Manufactory was taken under Imperial ownership by the forward-looking Empress Maria Theresia. Since then, every piece of porcelain produced by Augarten has borne the shield of the Babenberg family underneath the glaze to confirm its authenticity…
The Manufactory enjoyed a golden age under the management of Baron Conrad Sörgel von Sorgenthal, a time that has also come to be known as the “artistic period” in the history of Viennese porcelain production.
In the 1920s and 1930s, it was primarily artists of the Vienna Workshops (Wiener Werkstätte), such as Josef Hoffmann, Michael Powolny, Ena Rottenberg, Wally Wieselthier and Ida Schwetz-Lehmann, that injected many new ideas into the company. More than 200 new styles and figures stem from this period.
Design and artistic value reflect collaboration with generations of well-known artists. Augarten upholds this tradition, working closely with some of the most respected designers of our day.
MANU FACTUM EST – handmade porcelain from Vienna!
After Marco Polo brought bone china from Asia to Europe over 600 years ago, the western world searched long and hard to find the secret to porcelain production. It was not until around 1709 that Tschirnhaus and Böttger, in the service of Augustus the Strong, produced the first hard porcelain in Europe.
Four natural ingredients are needed to produce porcelain – feldspar, kaolin, quartz and water. The exact mixing ratio is a well-kept secret of each manufacturer! Porcelain is the diva among materials – it demands a great deal of intuition, dedication and artistic skill...
The Vienna Manufactory has a product range comprising more than 25,000 different items of porcelain. The variety is stunning, taking in everything from thimbles to floor vases 80cm tall and from Baroque mocha cups to contemporary egg cups.
In addition to our “standard program”, the manufactory also produces special masterpieces that present a real challenge and can only be made by real masters of the craft. These include very time-consuming figurines, floor vases in dimensions that require special know-how and skills, or paintings that bear the signature of the master painter and are real works of art in their own right.