It is one of a small number of specialized museums of ceramics in the world.
The Gardiner Museum was established in 1984 by George and Helen Gardiner, whose founding collection set the pattern for the future. Rather than building an encyclopedic collection, the Gardiners focused on specific areas of ceramic excellence which they collected in depth. Their collection was divided into two principal areas: Earthenwares, represented by ceramics from the Ancient Americas (pre-colonial America), Italian Renaissance maiolica, and English delftware; and Porcelain, with a focus on European porcelain of the 18th century, including specialized collections of Commedia dell’Arte figures and scent bottles.
During the Museum’s temporary closure, they are posting exhibitions and selections from their collection online through Google Arts & Culture. Discover Inuit ceramics, Chinese and Japanese porcelain, pottery from the Ancient Americas, and more!
Above: Rabbit Tureen (c.1755-1756)
by Chelsea Porcelain Manufactory