Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

A Canal in Venice

Artist:
Martín Rico y Ortega (Spanish, Madrid 1833–1908 Venice)
Date:
ca. 1875
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
19 3/4 x 26 3/4 in. (50.2 x 67.9 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Collection, Bequest of Catharine Lorillard Wolfe, 1887
Accession Number:
87.15.57
Not on view
Inscription: Signed (lower left): RICO
[Reitlinger, Paris, until 1880; sold on January 15 for Fr 4,000 to Knoedler]; [Knoedler, New York, 1880; stock no. 2235; sold February 7 for $1,400 to Wolfe]; Catharine Lorillard Wolfe, New York (1880–d. 1887)
Providence, R.I. Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design. "To Look on Nature: European and American Landscape, 1800–1874," February 3–March 5, 1972, unnumbered cat.

Cambridge. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. "To Look on Nature: European and American Landscape, 1800–1874," April 6–May 7 1972, unnumbered cat.

St. Petersburg, Fla. Museum of Fine Arts. "Spanish 19th Century Painters," January 15–?March 31, 1973, no catalogue?

Albuquerque Museum. "Prelude to Spanish Modernism: Fortuny to Picasso," August 21–November 27, 2005, no. 24 (as "A Canal in Venice I").

Dallas. Meadows Museum, Southern Methodist University. "Prelude to Spanish Modernism: Fortuny to Picasso," December 11, 2005–February 26, 2006, no. 24.

Madrid. Museo Nacional del Prado. "El paisajista Martín Rico (1833–1908)," October 30, 2012–February 10, 2013, no. 40.

Dallas. Meadows Museum, Southern Methodist University. "Impressions of Europe: Nineteenth-Century Vistas by Martín Rico," March 10–July 7, 2013, no. 40.

Mrs. Schuyler van Rensselaer. "The Wolfe Collection at the Metropolitan Museum. II." Independent 39 (November 24, 1887), p. 9.

Montezuma [Montague Marks]. "My Note Book." Art Amateur 16 (May 1887), p. 122.

A[lfred]. G[eorge]. Temple. Modern Spanish Painting; being a review of some of the chief painters and paintings of the Spanish school since the time of Goya. London, 1908, p. 47.

Harry B. Wehle. The Metropolitan Museum of Art: A Catalogue of Italian, Spanish, and Byzantine Paintings. New York, 1940, p. 300.

To Look on Nature: European and American Landscape, 1800–1874. Exh. cat., Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design. Providence, 1972, pp. 203–5, pl. 73, dates it about 1875 and remarks that this reflects the influence of Fortuny when both he and Ortega worked together in Granada.

Mme Claude Rico-Robert. Letter to Mrs. Rizzo. January 31, 1977, states that there is a small sketch corresponding exactly to the center and right-hand thirds of this painting in a small notebook dated 1879 in her possession, and that on the same page is an inscription taken from the statue of Colleoni; notes that in another notebook of the same period are sketches for the two children on the fountain at left.

Rebecca A. Rabinow. "Catharine Lorillard Wolfe: The First Woman Benefactor of the Metropolitan Museum." Apollo 147 (March 1998), pp. 52, 55 n. 28.

Mark Roglán et al. Prelude to Spanish Modernism: Fortuny to Picasso. Exh. cat., Albuquerque Museum. Albuquerque, 2005, p. 166, colorpl. 24, identifies the scene as the Soranzo Van Axel Palace in the Cannaregio quarter of Venice.

Javier Barón in Impressions of Europe: Nineteenth-Century Vistas by Martín Rico. Ed. Javier Barón. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. Dallas, 2013, pp. 104, 106 [Spanish ed., "El paisajista Martín Rico [1833–1908]," Madrid, 2012, pp. 102, 105], compares it to Rico's "Canal in Venice" (about 1883, Art Institute of Chicago).

Claude Rico Robert in Impressions of Europe: Nineteenth-Century Vistas by Martín Rico. Ed. Javier Barón. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. Dallas, 2013, p. 37 [Spanish ed., "El paisajista Martín Rico [1833–1908]," Madrid, 2012, p. 36], identifies the site as the Palazzo Soranzo-Van Axel.

Javier Barón et al. in Impressions of Europe: Nineteenth-Century Vistas by Martín Rico. Ed. Javier Barón. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. Dallas, 2013, pp. 210–11, 223, no. 40, ill. (color) [Spanish ed., "El paisajista Martín Rico [1833–1908]," Madrid, 2013, pp. 209–10, no. 42, ill. (color)], provide history of the site and state that the Van Axel family's coat of arms appears on the tympanum of the landing leading to the Fondamenta delle Erbe because they still owned the palazzo when Rico painted it; note that Rico widened the main façade to enhance the monumental appearance of the building; state that the preparatory sketch for it in "Sketchbook 12: Paris, Venice" (Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid) can be dated to 1879 and, therefore, The Met's picture can be attributed to the same date; note that it may be the painting Rico called "Palace and Garden near Colleone" in his "Notebook of Sales" (1879), which he sold in 1879; note that Rico later painted the palace's garden in "Aubade, Zanudo Garden" (1890, Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha); discuss the differences between the sketch and the final painting, as well as Rico's techniques to capture faithfully Venetian light; state his "A Canal in Venice" (Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, 1931.22) may be a small replica.

Impressions of Europe: Nineteenth-Century Vistas by Martín Rico. Ed. Javier Barón. Exh. cat., Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid. Dallas, 2013, p. 286 [Spanish ed., "El paisajista Martín Rico [1833–1908]," Madrid, 2012, p. 272], as "Palacio y jardín cerca de Coleone" (Palace and garden near Coleone), sold for 4000 francs to Knoedler in 1879.



A copy of this painting was sold at Sotheby's, May 23, 1985, as "Along a Venetian Canal" by Rico y Ortega [see Ref. Rico-Robert 1986]. The building represented is possibly the Palazzo Soranzo van Axel.
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