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Assortment of 12
elements with polychrome and gold decoration
Pasquale Rubati Factory
Milan, 1770- 1790 circa


Two oval trays 10.62 in x 8.58 in
Two dishes with perforated brim diameter 10.43 in
Eight round dishes diameter 9.37 in

State of conservation:

very good
except for light chips
with color drops at the edges
a greater one in a round dish

This rare set of dishes has great decorative impact and confirms the undisputed artistic ability of Pasquale Rubati’s productions during the period of his greatest success. It also attests to the taste of the great Milanese commissions of the eighteenth century.
Pasquale Rubati, a refined painter, opened his own factory in Milan in 1756, in competition with Felice Clerici, for whom he had worked. Upon his death in 1796, the enterprise continued on for a few years under his son Carlo.

The maiolica assortment has flat-base shapes with a mixtilinear eight-pointed edge which is barely detectable in the round and oval dishes, whereas two other dishes have a flat base and light brim and demonstrate a perforated pattern made with a mold.
The very complex decoration, with small variations in one of the round plates, shows four triangular compartments, joined together by thin festoons in gold, which branch off from the all-round rim with four ornamental motifs in shades of pink: a motif in partridge eye, one with scales, one with triangles and one with a grid. At the center of the composition there is a small bunch of polychrome flowers from which four thin floral elements branch off radially; these are joined to the vertices of the triangular reserves.
All the works, with the exception of one, have a yellowish-green brushstroke on the back and are reflected in a document plate preserved in the collections of the Museum of Applied Arts at the Sforzesco Castle in Milan which bears the initials of the Pasquale Rubati factory in Milan on the back. (Ausenda, R., edited by, Musei e Gallerie di Milano. Museo d’Arti Applicate. Le ceramiche. Second Volume. Milan 2001, pp. 408-409, n. 383, n. 372.)
The maiolica and porcelain productions in the eighteenth century belonged mainly to the great royal families or to the noble families who made the manufacture of ceramic works a cause for prestige. In Milan, under Maria Theresa of Austria, we instead witness a real opening to new entrepreneurs who, by virtue of the privatization granted by the government, took on a real business risk and gave life, not without conflicts between them, to thriving factories and to some of the most elegant and sought after productions at that moment and which are still the object of collecting today.


R. Ausenda, a cura di, Musei e Gallerie di Milano. Museo d’Arti Applicate. Le ceramiche. Tomo secondo. Milano 2001, pp. 408-409, n. 383, n. 372.

Cover Photo: Fabrizio Stipari