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An Extensive View of the Molo, Venice, Looking Towards the Riva degli Schiavoni, c. 1700

Luca Carlevarijs

Italian, 1665-1731
Oil on canvas
33-1/4 x 64-1/4 in. (84.5 x 163.2 cm)
The Norton Simon Foundation
F.1973.31.P
© 2012 The Norton Simon Foundation

On view

Venice was a favorite subject of Italian view painters, and Luca Carlevarijs was the first to popularize this genre through his paintings and illustrations. A native of Udine in north-eastern Italy, Carlevarijs’ taste for painting and architecture was likely based on his father’s profession as a painter and designer. His paintings and engravings frequently included the most important monuments of the subject city—in this case, Venice.

In this cityscape, the foreground opens onto the Molo (jetty) with its two granite columns, and continues in the distance on the broad promenade of the Riva degli Schiavoni, which stretches out before us in the foreground. In etching as in paint-ing, Carlevarijs accomplished more than just a visual record of the city’s monuments; he captured the appearance of the city itself, much like a chronicler. In doing so, he established for the entire Settecento (eighteenth century) the iconographical and pictorial conventions of the Venetian veduta, or cityscape.

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