Maiolica flat plate, tin-glazed, made in Montelupo , Italy (d 21,7 cm, early 17th century). The arabesque style decoration shows the strong influence of the Moorish-Hispano art on Montelupo’s pottery designs. Three spots in the centre were caused by the tripod stilts used for stacking plates during firing. Montelupo is situated in the heart of Tuscany , between Florence and Empoli, and has been an important centre for manufacturing ceramics since medieval times. Its success can be credited to the natural abundance of clay in the surrounding area, primarily due to frequent flooding of the Arno River , and second, the role Florentine merchants historically played in trading Montelupo’s maiolica, or hand-painted terra-cotta, throughout Europe during the Renaissance ( private collection Athens, Greece).
Piatto in Maiolica Montelupo, XVII secolo (Coll. Privata, Atene, Grecia).