The collection consists of over 130 important examples of eighteenth and early nineteenth century English porcelain and decorative art objects collected by the Sydney collector Annie Maria Gillies (Mrs Sinclair Gillies).
In 1953 Annie Marie Gillies bequeathed parts of her collection of eighteenth century English ceramics and decorative arts to both the Art Gallery of NSW and the Vaucluse Park Trust (which later became part of the Historic Houses Trust). In 1998 both these collections were transferred to the Powerhouse Museum where they form the Gillies Collection. These items demonstrate the strength of the porcelain industry and marketplace in England between the mid eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. They reflect contemporary styles and fashions, particularly the Rococo as well as influences from East Asia and the classical past. In addition, they represent the output of several important factories, including Worcester, Derby, Bow and Spode, demonstrating their pursuit to perfect bone china and to improve their market positions. The collection also includes a selection of eighteenth and nineteenth-century snuff boxes in silver, enamelled copper, papier maché, tortoise shell and bone. As well as a rare pair of eighteenth-century shoe buckles, an eighteenth-century enamelled scent bottle, and a rococo-style jewellery box in glass with gilt and mother-of-pearl mounts. There is also a set of six china coffee cups and saucers painted by Reginald Austin in around 1914 illustrating Australian birds.
Annie Maria Gillies (Mrs Sinclair Gillies)
Commercial ceramics production; Derby Porcelain
Figures; Snuff boxes; Tableware
England, United Kingdom