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Panel of the kettledrummers

Panel of the Kettledrummers, Valencia

№ inv.: CE1/00796

This panel is composed of fifty polychrome tiles on a white background, depicting kettledrummers from the city of Valencia. It dates from the second half of the 18th century. The panel is decorated from left to right with a lady in a veil sitting next to a man in a hat, two kettledrums draped with a cloth depicting the Valencian coat of arms, their bearer, wearing the outfit of a mental hospital patient, the kettledrummer and, finally, three trumpeters. The scene is decorated with a rocaille-style frame.

This very unusual theme and depiction of the clothing of the time provide interesting information. From the 16th century, tile makers from Castile and Andalusia settled in the city of Valencia to manufacture tiles for emblematic buildings, such as Palacio de Generalitat (Palace of the Government), the Colegio Seminario del Corpus Cristi (College Seminary of Corpus Christi) or the Monasterio de San Miguel de los Reyes (Monastery of San Miguel de los Reyes).

At the end of the 17th century and especially in the 18th century, the city of Valencia became an important production centre of tiling and decorated panels. The manufacture of tiles varied depending on their intended destination. For example, the tiling manufactured for parlours was called “a summer carpet” and depictured mythological scenes, the theme of the four seasons or motifs of everyday life. They also produced plinths, risers, panels and altarpieces with religious themes for church facades and building interiors, ceramic plates, also with religious designs, to be hung up or used in facades and stables, along with panels for kitchen walls.

These tiles were taken to the Exposición Regional Valenciana (the Valencian Regional Exhibition) in 1909 by D. Vicente Muñoz Llorens.

On display in the Sala de Alcora (Alcora Room), second floor.

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