While many travelers visited Florence, Rome, Naples and Venice while on their Grand Tour, the ancient port city of Genoa, nestled within the Apennine Mountains and on the northernmost coast of the Ligurian Sea, did not draw as many tourists. Visitors, such as Lapito, were rewarded by the city’s impressive architectural landmarks. The present work shows an expansive view of Genoa and its surrounding hills. Visible at left in the distance just above the city walls are the medieval spires of the Cattedrale di San Lorenzo and Santa Maria Assunta di Carignano. La Lanterna, Genoa’s ancient lighthouse standing 131 feet tall and over 380 feet above sea level, is visible at the right edge of the sprawling city. Until 1902 La Lanterna was the tallest lighthouse in the world. In 1449, one of the keepers of the lighthouse was listed as Antonio Colombo, uncle of Christopher Columbus.
Lapito has situated his idyllic view of the city from the mountains, looking down at the seaside port under a near cloudless sky. In the foreground he has placed Santuario di Nostra Signora del Monte, surrounded by the gardens of the Franciscan monks who had founded the site centuries ago. The scene is expansive, and Lapito has expertly captured the recession of space as the viewer’s focus travels from the apple picking couple, curving down roads and over hills to the misty air of the sea beyond. The silvery hues of blue and green recall the landscapes of Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, but the grand scale and specificity of this landscape are its distinct and impressive hallmarks.
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