The 18th Century in France was the golden age of fine tin-glazed pottery or 'faience'. At this time many pottery factories, varying greatly in size and and longevity, established themselves across the country.
Around 1750, the Baron Bruni de la Tour d'Aigues was granted royal authorisation to build a pottery factory near his château. Despite this knowledge, nothing remained to indicate what was produced in these workshops until recent excavations, which suggest that the site was used to manufacture faience pottery.
Although no pot fragments were found to support this conclusion, it is highly likely that 'rural landscapes in light green camaieu' was the signature of these workshops.
Most of the material found during the excavations is undecorated white faience, the majority of the objects unearthed being intended for day-to-day use. Therefore, there are dinner sets, and items worthy of a goldsmith, tulip trees, bidets, dolphin fountains and shaving dishes. Among these discoveries, some of the pieces that were unearthed were part of the dinner sets from the château. In addition to these archaeological finds, the museum holds a large collection of ordinary enamel ceramics which were used at the château between the 17th and 18th Centuries. Some of the decorative features from inside the château are also on show, for example the polychrome ornamental tiling or the set of Carrare marble medallions showing the Roman Emperors in profile.
Château de la Tour d'Aigues 84240 la Tour d'Aigues, France. Tel.: +33 (0)4 90 07 42 10.
The museum's collection brings together pieces from the Renaissance up to the French Revolution.© Collection Musee des Faiences
Created by Baron Bruno of the Tour d'Aigues, the castle's ceramics factory was in use until about 1785.© Collection Musee des Faiences
Undecorated white ceramics hold the most importance in the museum.© Collection Musee des Faiences