PROPERTY FROM THE ESTATE OF THE LATE JEAN MONTAGUE MASSENGALE
Suvée arrived in Paris in 1763 and studied with Bachelier. He won the Grand Prix de Rome in 1771, but as he had been born outside French territory, in order to qualify for the prize he had to declare his place of birth as Armentières, in French Flanders. The present drawing must have been made during the artist's stay in Rome, from 1772 to 1778. The art of Fragonard had a strong influence on Suvée's development, as did that of Hubert Robert. In 1801, he returned to Rome, as the director of the Villa Medici, and died there in 1807.
This fine, atmospheric Roman view is comparable with a number of the artist's other drawings, most of which are executed in the same medium1, and is particularly close in style to the View of the Interior of the Colosseum, in the Jeffrey E. Horvitz Collection.2
1. For other drawings by Suvée, see, J. H. Fragonard et H. Robert a Romaexhibition catalogue, Rome, Villa Medici, 1990-1991, pp.262-3
2. Mastery and Elegance, Two Centuries of French Drawings from the Collection of Jeffrey E. Horvitz, exhibition catalogue, Cambridge, Mass., Harvard University Art Museum, et al., 1999, p. 298, reproduced p. 299
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