Collection: Lithophanes and Porcelain Artwork Lighting and Table Lamps

Lithophanes and Porcelain Artwork Lighting and Desktop and/or Table Lamps

Lithophanes, the amazing porcelain artwork that comes alive when lit from behind. They captivate your heart and soothes your soul with their breathtakingly intricate 3-D images.

Lithophanes were hung in front of windows, where the sunlight streaming through the panel revealed the designs in the porcelain. Since lithophanes need to be lit to be viewed properly, many beautiful types of lamps were made incorporating these porcelain artworks. Because of the era from which they originated, most lithophanes lamps were quite fanciful and ornate. Candle screens were quite popular. Typically, they consisted of a decorative frame holding a lithophanes, with a built-in candleholder to illuminate it from the rear. (Our Victorian Stand is based on this type of the lamp.) Multipaneled lamps were also quite popular. These came in many forms. Some were ornate shades that would hold from four to six flat panels, mounted on a matching lamp base. These panels could be shaped as rectangles or trapezoids. (Our six panel table lamps are based on this type of lamp.) Sometimes, a similarly constructed shade was made to hang from the ceiling instead. Other lamps, instead of utilizing multiple panels, used one-piece hollow castings; cylindrical, conical, or sometimes round, with several images around their circumference. This type of shade is quite rare and highly prized. Lithophanes were made to fit in "hurricane" type lamps, desk lamps, table lamps, ceiling lamps, wall sconces; virtually any type of lighting fixture. A unique but popular vehicle for displaying lithophanes was the tea warmer. These ornate fixtures had lithophanes surrounding an enclosure, in which a candle was lit. Topping the enclosure was a metal plate on which a teapot could be set, and kept warm from the candle below.

The current Artist Marty Kubicki from the Porcelain Garden is dedicated to preserving and, indeed, furthering this extraordinary art form. All of our lithophanes are produced here in our studios, using many of the same methods developed by the original artists many generations ago. Of course, some things have changed; we now can use electric kilns for more consistent heating, and we use electric mixers to blend our porcelain formula (mixing clay by hand is not very rewarding artistically…). But the entire process of individually casting, finishing, drying, firing, and inspecting each piece, is still done today the same way it was done by our predecessors. It took us quite a few years to develop and hone our own skills, and we feel we now produce lithophanes of a quality and detail to rival the finest ever made. And we are very proud of that!

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