8 July 2016
Attributed to Michael Wutky (Krems 1739-1823 Vienna)
Vesuvius in eruption
oil on paper, laid down on canvas
17 5/8 x 22 7/8 in. (44.7 x 58.1 cm.)
Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 11 April 1980, lot 100, as 'Joseph Wright of Derby'.
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B. Nicholson, 'Wright of Derby: addenda and corrigenda*', in The Burlington Magazine, CXXX, p. 755, under footnote 30, fig. 42, as a study for the picture of Vesuvius in the Derby Museum and Art Gallery.
After inspecting the work in 1992, Judy Egerton stated (written communication with the owner) that she agreed with Nicolson’s theory that this picture was executed by the same hand as the Derby picture (loc. cit.) but, in her view, that Wright would have ‘attempted a greater degree of realism’. She suggested an alternative attribution to Michael Wutky, the Austrian landscape painter who frequently depicted Vesuvius.
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