THOMAS PATCH | FLORENCE, A VIEW OF THE RIVER ARNO WITH THE PONTE ALLE GRAZIE
Property from Robilant Fine Art, London, Milan & St. Moritz
Exeter 1725 - 1782 Florence
FLORENCE, A VIEW OF THE RIVER ARNO WITH THE PONTE ALLE GRAZIE
oil on canvas
unframed: 85 x 170.5 cm.; 33 1/2 x 67 1/8 in.
framed: 107 x 193 cm.; 42 1/8 x 76 in.
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The painting has a new stretcher and has been recently re-lined. The lining is in good condition and providing a secure support for the painting. The picture is in overall good condition with no extant damages or loss of paint. It has been recently cleaned and is ready to hang, with no need for further restoration or conservation. Examination under ultraviolet light reveals repairs to two old tears in the sky; one centre right, just above the building in the river front and to the left of he tree; the other centre left, just above and to the left of the tower on the horizon. There is further retouching to an old damage in the upper right corner, together with an area of associated fine infilling to the cracquelure here. There are a small number of further minor retouchings scattered across the painting. Held in a modern Carlo Maratta style frame.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.
Anonymous sale, London, Christie’s, 27 May 1921, lot 136 (as attributed to William Marlow);
Anonymous sale, New York, Sotheby's, 24 January 2008, lot 424 (as Thomas Patch) for $350,000.
"There were many successful view painters in Italy during the eighteenth century, but few of them were as evidently entranced by the charm of daily life in Italy as Patch. Here the artist used his veduta as the setting to paint the real life of Florence's inhabitants, seen here crossing the Arno in a boat, stripping off to go for a dip, or doing the laundry. All of this wrapped in the warm glow of Italy's sun and Florence's history."
This idyllic view shows the city of Florence and the Ponte alle Grazie from the banks of the River Arno. Constructed in 1237 and originally conceived with nine arches, the Ponte alle Grazie, which connects the Via dei Benci and Piazza de' Mozzi, was one of the first bridges to be built in the city of Florence. The Ponte alle Grazie was the only bridge to survive the great floods of 1333; however, it did not fare as well under military attack and was destroyed by the Germans in 1944, making this painting an important historic document of the early appearance of this medieval structure.
Three other variants of this composition by Thomas Patch are recorded: one was sold at Sotheby's, London, 9 March 1988, lot 64, for £16,500; another is in the collection of the Marquess of Cholmondeley at Houghton Hall, one of a pair delivered to Horace Walpole from Sir Horace Mann in December 1771;1 and the third was sold at Sotheby's, London, 5 July 1967, lot 7.
1 F.J.B. Watson, 'The Life of Thomas Patch', in The Walpole Society, vol. XXVIII, p. 39, no. 26.