A NEO-CLASSICAL PALACE INTERIOR IN NAPLES, Italian School

A NEO-CLASSICAL PALACE INTERIOR IN NAPLES, Italian School

c. 1830 Italy

Offered by Charles Plante Fine Arts

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This is the type of watercolour that so imbues Mario Praz's work with the warmth of the south and encapsulates many views of Italian lodgings taken by affluent foreign families sojourning in Italy. It is faithfully, even painstakingly, rendered with great sympathy for the light and brilliance of the landscape beyond, so much more important for the occupants than the contents of the room. Although of interest to the artist as a memento of happy weeks or months, this room is characteristically devoid of any personal touches in the manner of portraits or travelling impedimenta. It is a portrait of the room as the visitor found and left it.

Updated by the inclusion of some strongly Italianate Empire furniture, the bones of the design and the decoration consist of the demodé eighteenth century Louis XVI style. Striped-blue wall fabric with matching upholstery covering the side banquettes and the earlier side chairs on plain terracotta tiled floors are all a foil for the simple device of updating the room with unlined draped curtains. A glass-domed clock on a neo-classical table corresponds with the date of the neo-classical painted ceiling, whereas the modern Empire style is seen in the sinumbra lamp, centre table and piano. The scene must date from about 1830 and may well be in a palace in Naples, resembling an interior (see Gere, Nineteenth Century Interiors, 1992, p.38) of a similar date in the seventeenth-century Palazzo Satriano, enlarged in the eighteenth century by the Neapolitan architect Ferdinando Sanfelice (1675-1748), with later up-to-date neo-classical decorations undertaken by Gaetano Genovese (1795-1860) in the 1820s when he arrived in Naples from Eboli.
The Knight of Glin
Alvar Gonzalez-Palacios, Il Mobile Nei Secoli, Italia, III, 1969, p73, fig 107
Charlotte Gere, Nineteenth Century Interiors: An Album of Watercolours, London 1992
Mario Praz, Illustrated History of Interior Decoration, London, 1964
Dimensions
Height 190.00 mm (7.48 inches)
Width 266.00 mm (10.47 inches)
Medium
Gouache with watercolour heightened with gold
Charles Plante Fine Arts

Charles Plante Fine Arts
50 Gloucester Street
London
SW1V 4EH

+44 (0)20 7834 3305
+44 (0)7798 626249
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