• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 5403

    Nineteenth Century European Art

    24 January 2008, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 108

    Carlo Fornara (Italian, 1871-1968)

    A village next to the Vigezzo valley, Ossola, Italy

    Price Realised  

    Carlo Fornara (Italian, 1871-1968)
    A village next to the Vigezzo valley, Ossola, Italy
    signed 'C. Fornara' (lower right)
    oil on panel
    15 x 11½ in. (38 x 29 cm.)

    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    The authenticity of this work has been kindly confirmed by Professor Annie-Paule Quinsac on the basis of a photograph.

    Fornara's artistic education was pursued at the Scuola d'Arte di Santa Maria Maggiore, from 1884 to 1891, where he studied under Enrico Cavalli, a major influence in Fornara's career. In 1894, the artist made his first trip to France, where he settled in Lyon. There, he made a living by photographing bourgeois clients. Returning to Italy in 1899 he exhibited at the Venice Biennale and shortly afterwards began his association with divisionist artists. Divisionism, based on the use of pure unmixed pigments in small areas so that intermediate colours are formed by optical illusion, was a movement originated by French artist Georges Seurat that stood against the empirical nature of Impressionist painting. Fornara quickly gained international notoriety and, with the help of dealer Grubicy became a highly successful artist. He retired in 1921, but continued to work primarily on works of small dimensions.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Acquired directly from the artist by a relative in 1935.


    There is a photograph of the painting on an easel in the artist's studio. (Carlo Fornara Pittore - Milano 1971, p.29)