Read our COVID-19 safety guidelines. We are open on Independence Day, Monday, July 4.

The Bowles Porcelain Gallery

The Porcelain Gallery has been a much-loved component of the Legion of Honor for many years. A project initiated by the museums founder, Alma de Bretteville Spreckels, it shows an array of porcelain and pottery from England and continental Europe with a strong emphasis on the eighteenth century.

The front section of the gallery is devoted exclusively to the story of English porcelain, from the early days of the Chelsea factory to the widespread production of Worcester. The back section of the gallery tells the story of Continental porcelain and pottery. Highlights include the Bowles collection of Chantilly, as well as Meissen, Sèvres, and maiolica made in Renaissance Italy. Cases in the center of the gallery hold rotating displays of porcelain and pottery. Adjacent to the gallery is the Ceramic Study Center, which provides additional resources and research materials.

The pieces in the front of the gallery constitute the extensive collection of English porcelain gifted by Constance and Henry Bowles to the museum in 1991, and those of George McNear Bowles.


Tour of the Bowles Porcelain Collection

Enjoy the virtual tour of the Bowles Porcelain Gallery thanks to generous funding by the late Constance Bowles Peabody. You can also download the tour for use on an iPod, iPhone, or other smartphone.