Since 1513, the Portuguese established a direct and regular contact between China and Europe. Taking on the role of suppliers and commercial brokers, Lusitanian adventurers and merchants progressively penetrated that immense kingdom, which was, perchance, the most exotic of the horizons dreamed and created in Europe since the Middle Ages. Exotic is a term of latin origin, delivered from ancient Greek, meaning "outside", an essential condition to arise one's condition to marvel as it only exists after it is discovered. To this purpose the exotic object must always be transfered to a new context, in which it is reinterpreted, assuming another importance and meaning. But is the exotic always away from home, or are there moments in which it is "at the door", if not even "in house"? These are the questions this exhibition aims to answer, by presenting the influence of China in portuguese faience and azulejo in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Curator: Alexandra Curvelo (MNAz)