A View of Florence from the North Bank of the Arno
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A View of Florence from the North Bank of the Arno 1813
This idealised view of Florence recalls the idyllic classical landscapes of Claude and Poussin. The topographical detail was based on drawings made on the spot, but the overall composition, with picnicking figures, was conceived in the artist's studio. Fabre draws your attention from the shaded foreground to the sun-lit river and city, set against a hazy backdrop of snow-capped peaks. In the middle distance by the weir is a fourteenth-century watermill, which was destroyed in the nineteenth century to make way for the Lungarno Vespucci. Beyond is the Palazzo Signoria, and to the left the dome of the cathedral, Santa Maria del Fiore.

Glossary Open

Classical landscape

A tradition of landscape painting with its origins in ancient Roman art and revived in the 17th century by artists such as Nicholas Poussin. It usually includes a variety of natural forms, some buildings or other man-made structures, and human figures or animals. The positioning of each element is calculated to create harmony and balance.

Composition

The arrangement of different elements in a work of art.

Idealisation

The representation of something as a model of perfection.

Topographical

Refers to landscape pictures that faithfully represent a real place as it is seen rather than an imaginary or distorted landscape.

Classical landscape, Composition, Idealisation, Topographical

Details

  • Acc. No. NG 2692
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 96.00 x 135.00 cm
  • Credit Purchased with the aid of the Galloway Anderson Fund and the Art Fund 1998