PROPERTY FROM THE LONDON RESIDENCE OF DIMITRI MAVROMMATIS
a pair, the former signed and dated lower left on the rock: De La Croix/ 1767
Lacroix de Marseille painted the latter of these views on several other occasions: in a painting that sold in these Rooms, 5 July 2005, lot 13 (£130,000) which pre-dates the present work by three years, having been painted in 1764; in another work that sold in these Rooms, 8 March 1972, lot 72 (dated 1776); and in another which sold Monaco, Sotheby's, 15-16 June 1990, lot 294 (dated 1770).
These paintings were probably executed in Rome, where Lacroix is first documented in 1750 in the company of the Marquis de Vandières. His first dated work is from this same year, a view of a Seaport, signed and dated 'Grenier. de La. Crois. fecit Rom 1750'.1 The following year he made four copies of works by Claude-Joseph Vernet, under whom he was certainly studying so indistinguishable in style are his copies from Vernet's originals.2 Only after Vernet left Rome in 1753 do Lacroix's paintings take on their own identity. He is not recorded back in France until 1776, when he exhibited at the Exposition du Colisée, and it thus seems likely that these works were painted by Lacroix while he was still in Rome.
1. In Ohio, Toledo Museum of Art; see France and the Eighteenth Century, exhibition catalogue, London, Royal Academy, 6 January 1968 - 3 March 1969, no. 358.
2. Now at Uppark, Sussex; Vernet's originals are also at Uppark.
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