Lot 34
  • 34

LUCA CARLEVARIJS | Venice, a view of the Piazzetta looking towards the Punta della Dogana

200,000 - 300,000 GBP
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  • Venice, a view of the Piazzetta looking towards the Punta della Dogana
  • oil on canvas, unlined
  • 46 by 68cm.


Anonymous sale, London, Bonham's, 5 December 2012, lot 94, for £240,000, where acquired by the present collector.


Padua, Palazzo della Ragione, Luca Carlevarijs e la veduta veneziana del Settecento, 25 September – 26 December 1994, no. 41.


I. Reale and D. Succi (eds), Luca Carlevarijs e la veduta veneziana del Settecento, exh. cat., Milan 1994, p. 210, no. 41, reproduced in colour p. 209; D. Succi, Carlevarijs, Gorizia 2015, p. 190, no. 51, reproduced in colour p. 191.


The following condition report is provided by Henry Gentle who is an external specialist and not an employee of Sotheby's: Luca Carlevaris The Piazzetta , Venice. Oil on canvas, in a reproduction gilt frame in good condition. It was not possible to remove the painting from its the frame but the original canvas appears unlined. It has been strip lined to reinforce the tacking edge. The canvas is stable and has sufficient tension. The paint layer is in very well preserved original condition. In raking light some areas of the paint surface are raised but stable; raised stretcher marks are visible. Under UV light minor restoration can be detected along the left and top stretcher marks, to the extreme edges of the composition and one or two scattered across the surface. The paint texture is very well preserved and the fine and more vulnerable details to the figures and the architecture are in a good original state. Subtle tonal nuances remain and there appears to be little evidence of previous conservation intervention. The image would benefit from a light clean.
"This lot is offered for sale subject to Sotheby's Conditions of Business, which are available on request and printed in Sotheby's sale catalogues. The independent reports contained in this document are provided for prospective bidders' information only and without warranty by Sotheby's or the Seller."

Catalogue Note

Carlevarijs was the first of the great Venetian view painters. He had settled in Venice from his native Udine by 1679 and painted capricci and landscapes until 1703, when he published a series of 104 engravings of Venetian views. His earliest known view painting dates from that same year, and from that moment vedutismo became his focus, particularly as it coincided with the exponential increase in demand for the genre thanks to the large number of Grand Tourists, many of them British. Until the emergence of Canaletto in the 1720s, Carlevarijs was the finest and most successful vedutista in Venice, concentrating predominantly on the main stretch of the city around the Bacino di San Marco, the Piazzetta, as seen in the present work, and the Piazza San Marco. Datable to the mid-1710s, this painting shows the Piazzetta looking towards the Libreria, with the corner of the Palazzo Ducale closing the composition to the right. The success of the design is testified by the five known treatments of the view. The closest version to the present work, at least in terms of the disposition of the some of the foreground figures, is the painting formerly in a Milanese private collection.1

The figure far right is based on a figure study in the Victoria and Albert Museum. The figure far left, as well as the man with his back turned toward us wearing a brown over-mantle in the centre of the composition, are based on drawings by Carlevarijs formerly in the Salamon collection, Milan (figs 1 and 2).2 We are grateful to Matteo Salamon for providing us with images of the two drawings.

1 Succi 2015, p. 190, no. 52, reproduced.
2 Milan 1994, p. 293, nos 103 and 106, both reproduced p. 292.