As the craze for all things Chinese swept across Europe, the continent fell in love with porcelain. August the Strong was the only person to know the secret of how to make it. In 1710, he founded the first European porcelain manufactory in Meissen and made this exotic material into its unique calling card. Thirsting after its beauty, he collected thousands of pieces, the minority of which were the practical everyday items we associate with porcelain today. This explains how the Dresden Porzellansammlung is able to show precious vases, figurines and life-sized sculptures modelled after real animals owned by the Saxon king, alongside the finest dining services.