Lladró gets hip with Jaime Hayon, Tim Biskup, Devilrobots
This ain't your grandmother's Lladró. The sentimental -- some might say saccharine -- figurines that porcelain collectors have prized for generations take a radical leap with the Guest, pictured above. Working for Lladró Atelier, top Spanish designer Jaime Hayon commissioned L.A. artist Tim Biskup and the Tokyo design team Devilrobots to collaborate on a Red Bull character for a company built on sarsaparilla style.
The large Guests stand about 20 inches tall on lacquered wood bases and sport crazy eyes (Devilrobots), a skull shirt (Biskup) or a tattooed face (Hayon). Created in a limited edition of 250, each sells for $2,800.
The smaller Guests are about 1 foot tall and are also designed by, from left, Devilrobots, Hayon and Biskup. Each sells for $775 in a numbered, unlimited edition. (By comparison, the bestselling 1983 Lladró piece "Flowers of the Season," pictured here, is $3,500.)
Lladró appointed Hayon as an artistic advisor in 2006. His first collection, Fantasy, included porcelain jewelry, vases and sculptural objects showcasing the designer's mix of classical forms and the graphics found on Japanese vinyl art toys.
Other china and porcelain manufacturers such as Nymphenburg and Rosenthal have updated their offerings by working with contemporary designers too, but Lladró arguably has taken the boldest leap forward.
You can see for yourself. The Guest collection premieres in Los Angeles at an event open to the public from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. March 13 at Unici Casa, 9461 Jefferson Blvd., Culver City. Lladró President Rosa Lladró and artist Biskup will be on hand to greet guests of the Guest.
-- David A. Keeps
Photo credit: Lladró