John Singer Sargent (American, Florence 1856–1925 London)
Watercolor and graphite on white wove paper
10 x 14 in. (25.4 x 35.6 cm)
Gift of Mrs. Francis Ormond, 1950
Not on view
The peripatetic Sargent made his second trip to the Middle East in 1905-6 to conduct research for a mural commission for the Boston Public Library. While traveling, he often captured the sights and scenery in watercolor. At the acropolis of the ancient city of Baalbek (Lebanon), Sargent painted a series of watercolors focusing on the effect of warm Mediterranean sunlight on stone using a pastel palette. Here he depicts the Temple of Bacchus, with its distinctive leaning column fragment.
Inscription: [on verso at upper left]: 3 [underlined] / 148 - Greece ? / by J.S. Sargent; [at center right]: 4/72; [at lower left]: V.O (trust); [at lower center]: 990 [encircled]; [at lower right]: AW
the artist, until d. 1925; his sisters, Mrs. Francis Ormond (Violet Sargent) and Miss Emily Sargent, until 1936 (Emily Sargent's death); Mrs. Francis Ormond, until 1950