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1 juillet 2016

Luca Carlevarijs, A view of the Molo and Piazzetta, Venice, looking towards Santa Maria della Salute and the Dogana

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Lot 28. Luca Carlevarijs (Udine 1663-1730 Venice), A view of the Molo and Piazzetta, Venice, looking towards Santa Maria della Salute and the Dogana, oil on canvas, 66.5 x 102cm (26 3/16 x 40 3/16in). Estimate £70,000 - 100,000 (€85,000 - 120,000). Photo: Bonhams.

ProvenanceLanhydrock House, Cornwall, until 1969 and by descent to the present owner

LiteratureD. Succi, Carlevarijs, Gorizia, 2015, p. 193, no. 56, ill.

NotesThis relatively recently discovered work by Carlevarijs is unique in the artist's compositions: although a few are known which look towards the Molo from the Piazzetta, they also incorporate the Palazzo Ducale (for example, Milan, private Collection, Aldo Rizzi, Luca Carlevarijs, Venice, 1967, fig. 129; and Toronto Art Gallery of Ontario, Rizzi, fig. 130). 

The sophisticated depiction of perspective which is evident in the present work is something for which the artist was famous during his lifetime. Particularly innovative was this eye-level view-point which renders the looming architecture of Venice to be experienced from ground-level as it is in reality so that the viewer feels himself to be participating in the scene. Luca Carlevarijs was in many ways the inventor of the large-scale views of Venice which were to make the reputations of such artists as Canaletto and Guardi. Although he owed something to two seventeenth century artists in particular Gaspar van Wittel and Joseph Heinz, Carlevarijs animated his own vedute by breathing life into the figures who inhabit them. His fascination with the details of dress and the peculiarities of pose and gesture are evident in the numerous figure studies he sketched in oil from life before incorporating them in his finished works.

Bonhams. OLD MASTER PAINTINGS, 14:00 BST, LONDON, NEW BOND STREET

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