John Piper, C.H. (1903-1992)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE LONDON COLLECTION
John Piper, C.H. (1903-1992)

Views of Venice

Details
John Piper, C.H. (1903-1992)
Views of Venice
signed 'John Piper' (lower right)
ink, pastel, watercolour and gouache on paper
15 x 22 in. (38.1 x 55.8 cm.)
Executed in the mid-1970s.
Provenance
Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 13 March 1981, lot 198, where purchased by the present owner.
Special notice

Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.

Brought to you by

Alice Murray
Alice Murray

Lot Essay

John Piper made Venice-themed suites of work on three occasions between 1959 and the early 1970s. The first was for an exhibition at Arthur Jeffress' London gallery (Paintings and Watercolours of Venice by John Piper, May - June 1960); the second was a set of lithographic illustrations for an edition of Adrian Stokes' book Venice (standard edition published in 1965 by Gerald Duckworth & Co); the third, and best known, was in preparation for scenery backdrops used in Benjamin Britten's opera Death in Venice (first performed in 1973). John Piper was visually and intellectually inspired by the Victorian critic and artist John Ruskin and Ruskin's near-contemporary J.M.W. Turner, both of whom are strongly associated with Venice. The use of very high-keyed colours seen in the present work (which appears to date from the mid-1970s or later) may be a 'homage' to Turner's more intense watercolour sketches of Venetian subjects. The present work shows the ranges of buildings on either side of the opening of the Grand Canal, although not taken from the same spot (the upper view being from the island of San Giorgio; and the lower view from the Molo San Marco).

We are very grateful to Rev. Dr Stephen Laird FSA for preparing this catalogue entry.
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