The Hollóházi porcelain

Hollóházi porcelain is one of the most famous handicraft products in Hungary. The history of the product dates back to 1777, when the first glassworks, the ancestor of the porcelain manufactory, was built in Hollóháza, on the estate of the Károlyi family, where glass production began. Later, in 1831, the production changed direction and began to produce stoneware, thanks to the environmental conditions of the place. Their main product was ceramics with floral motifs, decorative plates, bowls, table sets and canteens, which were so popular that they were found in almost every bourgeois, peasant and village home.

The factory became so well known that it was exhibited at the Millennium Exhibition in 1896 and at the Paris World Exhibition in 1900. However, the storms of the world wars did not leave Hollóházi porcelain unscathed: the factory suffered serious damage during the Second World War and was subsequently nationalised.

In 1957, the building was restored, the mass mill was modernised, a brand new painting hall and transformer house were erected, and training for ceramic craftsmen was started, and porcelain production in Hollóháza began. However, at the beginning, the factory did not produce the usual creations, but instead made electric porcelain insulators, which were needed for the electrification programme of the national economy. Fortunately, from the 1960s onwards, the production of decorative objects and vessels resumed, thanks to the fact that the workers were still not far from art and retained their sense of beauty.

From 1970 onwards, several famous industrial and fine artists designed porcelain from Hollóházi, and possibly decorations on them, at the request of the factory. These included Endre Szász, Victor Vasarely and Amerigo Tot. These works created a new direction in porcelain production and international success was not long in coming. Hollóházi porcelain products are found all over the world: cups for sporting events, from the homes of heads of state to the Vatican.

The factory was modernised again at the turn of the millennium to meet the technical requirements of the 21st century.

The factory’s financial situation was difficult because of the mass production of goods, which meant that handicraft products were relegated to the background. Fortunately, thanks to the new owner of the factory, with new goals and a new name – Hollóházi Porcelain Manufactory Ltd. – the factory is striving to regain its old reputation, as it considers it important to pass on this wonderful old tradition to younger generations. Hollóházi porcelain is a Hungarikums.

Dóra Horváth

The typical motif of Hollóházi porcelain is the flower


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Main photo: Hollóházi porcelain world famous