Anonymous sale, New York, Sotheby's, 28 January 2000, lot 81; There acquired.
Paolo Anesi was one of the most important paesaggisti working in Rome in the mid-eighteenth century and specialized in painting views and ideal landscapes inspired by Rome and the campagna. This serene view of the Tiber River with the Ponte Rotto in the distance is animated by figures and vessels going about their daily life. The so-called Ponte Rotto (or “broken bridge”) is what remains of the ancient Pons Aemilius, originally built in the 2ndcentury BC. Today there is only one arch remaining, but in Anesi's time three arches were still intact.
The following condition report has been provided by Simon Parkes of Simon Parkes Art Conservation, Inc. 502 East 74th St. New York, NY 212-734-3920, firstname.lastname@example.org, an independent restorer who is not an employee of Sotheby's.
This work is generally in very good condition. Although it has not been restored recently, the painting looks quite well as is. The canvas has an old lining. There are small areas across the top and bottom edges which show slight instability. The lining does not need to be changed to correct this, but some small amount of consolidation is necessary. The painting is slightly dirty. There has been no abrasion or weakness to the paint layer and all the details are well preserved. The sky is also in good condition, but it has received a few broad, mostly cosmetic, restorations above the bridge in the lower left and around the birds in the center. There are also retouches around the edges of the picture. There are strong pentimenti of an earlier position of the tree above the bridge. These may become slightly more visible once the painting is cleaned and a few retouches will be necessary in this area.
The work should be cleaned, consolidated where it shows instability and retouched accurately. Overall the condition is very good and the painting will benefit from restoration. "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."