Herend Porcelain

Gyula Gulden

?-1956

Overcoming hardships.

 

Under Gyula Gulden Herend underwent a change of concept and a process of modernization.

Gyula Gulden and his father owned a significant part of the company shares. Gyula Gulden played a decisive role in the development of the manufactory, as fundamental changes were introduced in production in the early thirties. In 1929, sculptor Ede Telcs became senior art adviser and Emil Fischer was taken on as technical adviser.

Although figurines had been sporadically produced under Mór Fischer too, the real breakthrough came during this time, as a whole series of figurines was born under the management of Ede Telcs. Some of these were small reproductions of famous sculptures, others brand new creations. In the thirties the manufactory was making 150 bird and 200 other animal figures.

This period is hallmarked by well-known figurines such as Matyó Madonna and Lúdas Matyi by Elek Lux, Mrs. Déry by Miklós Liget, Tom Thumb by Ede Telcs, Sultan Suleiman and Hungarian Nobleman by Jenő Bory. That was also the time of Herend's fine nudes and a series of sports-related figurines. There were also busts of famous men, including Bach, Haydn and Liszt. The artistic reputation of the manufactory went from strength to strength. Herend won a Grand Prix again at the 1935 World's Fair in Brussels, where King Leopold of Belgium purchased the famous pheasant-patterned service. Edward, Prince of Wales, later Duke of Windsor, became another regular customer. After a Hungarian applied arts exhibition in Tallinn, the President of Estonia bought Herend porcelain for his new residence.

At the 1937 World's Fair in Paris, 1500 pieces of Herend porcelain were on show. Governor Miklós Horthy sent a wedding present of 25 Herend figurines to Julianna, heir to the Dutch throne. Success at the 1939 World's Fair in New York opened up a new market, which remains to this day. Herend returned from the 7th Milan Triennial in 1940 with the Diploma of Honour.

The Second World War cut Herend off from most of its export markets. However, Gyula Gulden accepted the post of consul in Portugal, thus ensuring an export route for Herend porcelain to several countries, the main markets at the time being Germany, Switzerland, Portugal, Slovakia, Italy and Belgium.

After the war Gyula Gulden left Hungary. News reached the workers in the manufactory during the 1956 Revolution that Gyula Gulden, former director of the manufactory, had died in the United States. Looking back objectively, it is safe to say that under his management the manufactory prospered despite the general circumstances and the world war. This was in no small measure due to his initiative and leadership.

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