Neapolitan School, Mount Vesuvius, Bay of Naples - 1833 gouache painting


An original 1833 gouache painting, Neapolitan School Mount Vesuvius, Bay of Naples.

This miniature gouache or ‘guazzo’ of the Neapolitan School is one of a pair that we have for sale showing the same Bay of Naples view with Vesuvius in different states of eruption (see stock codes JN-046 and JN-047).

This painting, intensely colourful and animated by small figures, is typical of the vedute style that flourished in Naples during this period to meet popular demand from wealthy Grand Tourists for souvenirs of the city. The anonymous artists of the Neapolitan School employed specific motifs and colours which today can be considered a unique, iconic visual language.

This view shows Vesuvius in an early state of eruption, bathing the scene in a warm pink light. Neapolitan fisherfolk are occupied in the foreground. Vesuvius as spectacle and its place in literary and mythological tradition dating back to ancient Rome, makes for a particularly powerful pictorial icon, appealing especially to the Romantic imagination of the early 19th century.

Unsigned. Dated lower centre.
In very good condition overall. When held in raking light, surface rubbing is evident, commensurate with age, and the slight shine of glue marks in the black border at the top edge. There is a slight toning to the paint at the right edge. To the verso there are small paper remnants from historically being laid down.
10.6cm x 14cm.

This picture is one of an interesting collection of works that we have for sale that were collected by a single owner in the 19th century. As such, they reflect the life of the collector - the Continental travels and habitations of a British Victorian. Many of the works are exquisitely executed and small in scale, and have the quality of souvenir or memento. The majority of the works are French in subject and their owner evidently had connections with Newton Smith Limbird Fielding (1799-1856), the esteemed English painter and lithographer who lived and worked for much of his life in Paris, exhibiting at the Paris Salon and Musée Colbert. Newton Fielding, along with his brother Thales, was a friend of Eugène Delacroix, and was appointed drawing master to the children of the Duke of Orleans, the future king Louis-Philippe. Interestingly, the owner of this collection of works also had an interest in the Royals, collecting prints relating to both British and French monarchy. There are also works in the collection depicting Switzerland and paintings of the Neapolitan School, reflecting the influence of the European Grand Tour on 19th century British tastes.

Text copyright © 2018 Somerset & Wood Fine Art Ltd. All rights reserved.

Product code: JN-047

Share this Product