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    Sale 7609

    Important Old Master & British Pictures Evening Sale

    8 July 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 28

    Gaspar van Wittel, called Vanvitelli (Amersfoot 1652/3-1736 Rome)

    Naples from the Sea, looking North East towards the Castel dell'Ovo, with the Castel Sant'Elmo and the Certosa di San Martino beyond; and The Darsena, Naples, with the Castel Nuovo and the Castel Sant'Elmo beyond.

    Price Realised  

    Gaspar van Wittel, called Vanvitelli (Amersfoot 1652/3-1736 Rome)
    Naples from the Sea, looking North East towards the Castel dell'Ovo, with the Castel Sant'Elmo and the Certosa di San Martino beyond; and The Darsena, Naples, with the Castel Nuovo and the Castel Sant'Elmo beyond.
    the latter signed and inscribed 'NAP GAS/VAN WITEL ROMA' (lower right, on the boat)
    oil on canvas
    11½ x 14 in. (29.2 x 35.6 cm.)
    a pair (2)


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    Vanvitelli went to Naples in 1700, on the invitation of the Spanish Viceroy Don Luis de la Cerda, Duke of Medinaceli, who had encountered him and his work in Rome when he was serving as Spanish Ambassador to Pope Innocent XII. The artist remained in Naples until June 1702 and must have returned several times subsequently.

    Vanvitelli frequently repeated his compositions and given the numerous views of the Darsena in particular - no fewer than nineteen other versions are known - it is likely that it was one of the artist's most popular views amongst both local and foreign patrons alike. The present unrecorded paintings are versions of a pair of similar size in the collection of the Earl of Leicester at Holkham Hall (G. Briganti, Gaspar van Wittel, ed. L. Laureati and L. Trezzani, Milan, 1996, pp. 262-3 and 269, nos. 352 and 369, both illustrated).

    All the known views of both compositions, which vary in canvas size, are of exceptionally high quality and although the general placement of the architectural components is broadly similar, Vanvitelli either changed the staffage or slightly altered the viewpoint in each variant.

    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.


    Provenance

    In the family of the present owners since the 1880s.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A EUROPEAN PRIVATE COLLECTOR