Francesco Zuccarelli, R.A. (Pitigliano 1702-1788 Florence)
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Francesco Zuccarelli, R.A. (Pitigliano 1702-1788 Florence)

A wooded landscape with washerwomen by a river, a pedlar on a path nearby, a town and hills beyond

Details
Francesco Zuccarelli, R.A. (Pitigliano 1702-1788 Florence)
A wooded landscape with washerwomen by a river, a pedlar on a path nearby, a town and hills beyond
signed and dated 'Fran:co Zuccarelli / 13 Agosto / 1742[?]' (lower left)
oil on canvas
29 1/8 x 45 in. (74 x 114.5 cm.)
in an Italian 18th-century carved and gilded, centred raking gadrooned frame
Provenance
Edward Walker (1800-1874), Berry Hill, Mansfeld; (†), Christie’s, London, 24 July 1880, lot 251.
(Probably) Sir Julius Wernher, 1st Bt. (1850-1912), and to his wife
Alice, Lady Wernher (1862-1945), subsequently Lady Ludlow, to his son
Major-General Sir Harold Wernher, 3rd Bt., K.C.V.O. (1893-1973); Christie’s, London, 6 December 1946, lot 39 (270 gns. to Agnew’s).
Anonymous sale [The Property of a Gentleman]; Christie’s, London, 2 July 1976, lot 54.
Anonymous sale; Christie’s, London, 9 December 1988, lot 39.
Anonymous sale [The Property of a Gentleman]; Christie’s, London, 3 December 1997, lot 88.
Literature
G. Rosa, ‘Dipinti inediti o poco noti di Francesco Zuccarelli’, Rivista d’Arte, 13, 1931, p. 426.
W. Arslan, ‘Considerazioni su Francesco Zuccarelli’, Bollettino d’Arte, XXVII, May 1934, p. 510, fig. 2.
G. Rosa, Zuccarelli, Milan, 1945, pl. 16.
R. Pallucchini, La pittura nel Veneto: Il Settecento, II, Milan, 1996, pp. 324 and 325.
F. Spadotto, Francesco Zuccarelli, Milan, 2007, pp. 21, 110 and 204, fig. 16, no. 62.
Special notice

From time to time, Christie's may offer a lot which it owns in whole or in part. This is such a lot.

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Lot Essay

Born in the Tuscan village of Pitigliano, Francesco Zuccarelli underwent his early training in Florence, possibly with Paolo Anesi, and then in Rome with Giovanni Maria Morandi, Pietro Nelli and perhaps Andrea Locatelli. In Rome he was able to absorb the great tradition of European landscape painting, from Claude through to the eighteenth century, and carry these lessons first back to Florence and then to Venice, where he settled in 1732. There he immediately succeeded as a painter of pastoral landscapes, enjoying the patronage of the most illustrious collectors of the time: Francesco Algarotti, Marshal Schulenburg and Joseph Smith, the latter playing a key role in the development of the artist’s career in Venice and abroad.

It was around the time of his meeting Smith that this picture was painted, signalling the start of a decade of rich success in the 1740s. Characteristic of his early maturity, this fine work embraces the Roman landscape tradition of his training, but picks out features typical of the countryside in the Veneto, with its trees and streams, stone bridges and villas. His landscapes proved remarkably popular with both Italian patrons and English visitors on the Grand Tour. On the back of his success, he travelled to England in 1752, where he found great fame, and would become a founder member of the Royal Academy in 1768.

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