Regis Galerie, located in The Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian Hotel, hosted an exclusive signing event featuring Rosa Lladró, president of Lladró, the fine porcelain art company, on Oct. 21. The free event highlighted Lladró’s newest figurine, "Passionate Tango," a limited edition (3000) of a couple locked in one of the sensuous dance’s most spectacular steps and handcrafted out of the finest porcelain from Valencia, Spain.
The dance we’ve come to know as the tango originated in Argentina and Uruguay and there are variations on each country’s style as well as a ballroom version. Lladró’s creation pays homage to the movement once described as “a sad thought that dances”. The bodies are entwined in an erotic tangle, their legs stretched into different versions of a split as they lean into each other. Their faces are close enough to share a kiss.
The Regis Galerie is an elegant two-story space filled with posh decorative items ranging in size from a one-inch Japanese Netsuke carving (in mammoth ivory – that’s from an actual mammoth) to a greater-than-life-size bronze mermaid in full dive pose, her tail several feet above any casual observer’s head.
Their extensive collection of unique and rare collectibles and works of art covers nearly 20,000 square feet. Oil paintings line the walls accented by decorative lighting; sculptural pieces stand at attention every few feet. The gallery features rare art from distinguished names such as Daum, Lalique and Jay Strongwater, as well as distinctive home furnishings and a world renowned Asian art collection. They continue to be the leading dealer of authentic Fabergė pieces (those fabulous jeweled eggs from Russia) in the United States.
From General Manager Ike Dweck: “We are proud to be the largest dealer of authentic Lladró in Nevada and continue to be inspired by the legacy that Lladró shares with its customers.”
In the middle of all of this upscale décor, a gracious and elegant Rosa Lladró (in a blue silk dress and black jacket) signed figurines of all sizes and types and posed for pictures with customers and visitors, several of whom purchased the $1500 limited edition. Those who did leave with their own “Passionate Tango” also received a CD recording of a selection of rhythms and themes inspired by the sensual dance. Once signed, a Lladró collectible increases in value.
The Lladró president is currently on a multi-city signing tour promoting "Passionate Tango". Las Vegas was just one of her North American stops, which also included New York, Houston, Beverly Hills, and cities in Maryland, Illinois and Michigan.
The official company name is Lladró from Spain (Almacera, near Valencia, to be exact) and the entire enterprise began as a small family business in 1953, when three brothers Jose, Juan (padre de Rosa) and Vincente Lladró began creating porcelain jugs, vases and eventually, the detailed porcelain figurines and statues that the Lladró from Spain company is famous for. The company expanded in 1958 to Tavernes Blanques, Spain, which came to be known as the “City of Porcelain” and the Lladró artist training school was opened in 1962.
Popularity soared as the porcelain figurines found their way to Australia, eventually circling the globe by popular demand. Large Lladró collections are displayed in the Hermitage Museum of Saint Petersburg, Russia, The Danto Domingo Modern Art Museum in the Dominican Republic, and the Brussels Royal Museum of Art and History, among others.
Lladró sculptures arrived in America in 1965 and were featured in fine gift shops and retailers. The first Lladró proprietary store was established in NYC in 1988.
Lladró currently has a retail presence in over 120 countries (more than 4,000 retail locations) with over 2,000 people working for the company today. There are shops in Paris, London, New York, Beverly Hills, Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Sydney, Miami, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia.
Rosa Lladró stands in black stilettos as delicate as any of her company’s prized creations and signs various porcelain pieces with grace and precision – and she doesn’t mind doing it for hours. She only asks that she have a serene expression on her face as you photograph her while she’s signing – it’s only then that she wears her reading glasses. The vibrant Ms. Lladró needn’t worry; like her company’s famous creations, she’s impressive at any angle.