By GABBIE GIBSON
LLADRO AT NIELSENS: The new showing of Lladro’s Utopia collection will be kicking off with a signing event at Nielsens at 81st Street and Lewis Avenue on June 2 at 6-8 p.m. David Lladro will be on hand to sign pieces bought between now and June 2.
A rare signing event is coming to Tulsa Tuesday, June 2, when David Lladro unveils the new Lladro Utopia Collection at Nielsens Exclusive Gifts, located at 81st Street and Lewis Avenue. The signing will be from 6 to 8 p.m. David Lladro is the youngest son of co-founder Vicente Lladro. Lladro, the world-renowned Spanish designers and creators of artistic porcelain sculptures, has created the 18-piece collection to honor the works of the Lladro Brothers as they reinterpret the themes that have remained constant throughout the last 50 years of Lladro history.
Admirers who purchase Lladro sculptures will have the opportunity to have David personally sign their piece, as well as contribute to Operation Smile as 10 percent of the sales of this special collection will be donated. This organization provides medical training to health care professionals and gives reconstructive surgery to children and young adults with cleft lips and palates and birth defects in 25 developing countries and the U.S. Nielsens will also make a 10 percent charitable donation to customers’ favorite charities when making a purchase between now and the June 2 signing.
The figurines Lladro have a rich history. Three brothers founded them in 1953: Juan, Vicente, and Jose Lladro of Alamerca, Spain near Valencia and have grown to a worldwide conglomerate consisting of 120 countries.
The Lladros began their career by making vases and jugs and by 1953 they began creating the sculptures that became famous. They moved to Tavernes Blanques in 1958 where they opened a training facility that is still running today.
Lladro’s influence grew internationally as it spread to Tokyo with its Bussan Lladro collection in 1986 and New York with The Lladro Museum and Gallery in Manhattan in 1988.
As of late, they have launched Lladro Privilege Society for their most dedicated fans to keep them up on products.
Lladro pieces are originals and have an identifier burn on the base beginning in 1974 that guarantees their authenticity.
Among the originals are the Society Member Pieces which were produced in 1985-2000, and were sold at one time for $85 but now go for as much as $3,500.
Lladro pieces were a hard to find treasure in Oklahoma until the 1960s when Art and Dorothy Nielsen, along with their daughter, Andrea, were at a market and were shown some porcelain angels: one of them was praying, two were playing instruments, and one of them appeared to be getting in trouble. They were informed that three brothers on a farm in Spain made the pieces. Mrs. Nielsen believed that they would be perfect for their shop as the statues had “personality.”
Nielsen’s is located on 8138 S. Lewis Ave. For more information call 298-9700 or visit www.nielsensgifts.com.