In 1967 the Lladró brothers purchased a small porcelain factory very close to the city of Valencia and began collaborating with the best local porcelain artisans. A new style was born, with the staff being trained specifically for that purpose, leading to the first creations commercialized under the name Rosal. Seen from the optic of current standards, the modeling of these figurines might look less sophisticated; however these creations are full of charm and innocence, two features that have been lovingly maintained in its subsequent evolution.
Rosal created pieces with themes that would endure as the brand evolved: focusing primarily on a life full of romanticism in an undefined idyllic time.
Following the success of the new brand, the next step came in 1975. The name of the collection changed to ZAPHIR and the factory moved to new premises with larger workshops, with a view to expanding the company in the future. ZAPHIR creations were more stylized and embraced a wider variety of themes. They were the natural result of the porcelain mastery gained by the young artisans.
The popularity of the brand in the USA spread rapidly, confirming it as an internationally renowned brand. This led the Lladró brothers to search for a different business name and to work towards introducing themselves into other international markets. NAO borrowed its name from the old sailing boats from the time of Columbus, and symbolizes a return journey to origins, conveying creativity, skill and magic. This is how the dream of the Lladró brothers came into being: to make porcelain figurines affordable for lovers of beauty.
Today, the Lladró brothers original small workshop has now become a corporation where hundreds of artists work everyday, producing creations which are sold all over the world.
Nao Made In Spain
The ceramic tradition of the Valencian Community goes back to Roman times, and since then has continued to be one of the exponents of the artistic skills of an area of Spain that has also been expressed through painting, sculpture and music.
Since it first started in 1968, NAO has always chosen the finest local artisans for the elaboration of its porcelains, and they have given us demonstrations everyday of their talent and skills with this material.
Our figurines are the result of a seamless combination of handcrafted work with the most innovative porcelain-making techniques. The experience of NAO professionals coupled with the company ’s track record in this sector accounts for our products’ outstanding quality. Besides, their liking for details gives our figurines their characteristic warmth and beauty. The sweetness of children’s faces and the liveliness of some scenes are excellent proof of the uniqueness of the NAO collection.