Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Venice: Canaletto and His Rivals exhibition at The National Gallery - masterpieces of Venetian sights

Giovanni Antonio Canal, better known as Canaletto, was born in Venice at the end of the 17th century. Trained as a theatrical scene painter, he was well known for his paintings of Venice's sights, churning out contemporary scenes of the millennium old republican for English well heeled on the Grand Tour.


It was not only his attention to details be it of architecture or human nature, it was the manner he threw light onto his paintings that made his work so sought after. But his position of the master of Venetian paintings was by no means unassailable for there were several contenders to his throne throughout his career.

In Venice: Canaletto and His Rivals now running at The National Gallery, works from three accomplished artists, Michele Marieschi, Bernardo Belloto and Francesco Guardi. There are many instances where works of Canaletto and these three perceived rivals are placed alongside to comparison.

While the subject matter might be somewhat similar (in some cases identical), it's quite apparent that each artist managed to develop his personal style - Marieschi's dramatism, Belloto's emphasis on zooming into a few subject matter and Guardi's poetic take on Venetian scenes.
Where to eat in the area...
Four Seasons (under £15)
Tokyo Diner (under £15)
Sun Luen Snack Bar (under £5)
As always, there's a short filmshow towards the end of the exhibition. I would advise that you head towards there first so as to get a background of the exhibition. The admission price of £12 may be on the steep side but if you have got time to spare, the exhibition can easily occupy your entire afternoon. For the complete works found in the exhibition and an accompanying writeup, refer to David Bennington's Venice: Canaletto and His Rivals.

Venice: Canaletto and His Rivals
13 Oct 2010 - 16 Jan 2011
The National Gallery
Trafalgar Square
London WC2N 5DN

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FĂ«anor said...

Ha. Wife and I were supposed to go for this on a corporate event sponsored by a bank, but she fell ill, we didn't go, I'm deeply depressed, end of story.

C K said...

Well, why not go down again another day? If you do, look out for The Doge Courtyard and Clive Head's accompanying mini exhibition.