This painting will be sold with a certificate of authenticity by the Association Félix Ziem dated 27 March 2010. The work will be included in the forthcoming supplement to the catalogue raisonné.
After studying architecture in Dijon, Ziem worked as a surveyor on the construction of the Marseille canal, before his watercolours attracted the patronage of Ferdinand-Philippe, Duc d'Orléans. In 1842, he visited Italy for the first time and fell in love with Venice. Ziem travelled to Venice numerous times between 1842 and 1897, sometimes painting from a floating studio on a gondola. Whilst the artist also painted in Constantinople, North Africa and in the forest of Fontainebleau, his views of Venice are his most compelling and sought-after compositions.
The present lot glorifies both Venice’s architecture and daily activities. Timeless Venetian architecture frames the left side of the composition; the Doges Palace and the imposing columns of Saint Theodore and Saint Mark being the dominant features. Meanwhile, a gondola sets forth towards the right of the composition, where larger vessels are arriving and departing the city of water. As the dominance of the buildings gives way to the expanse of the Adriatic Sea, Ziem shows us that this is not only a city of beautiful historic importance, but it is impressively connected to the wider trading world in its daily business, all underneath a golden sun infused sky.