Turpin de Crissé is thought to have begun this architectural view during his second trip to Rome, in 1818, and to have completed it on his subsequent trip, in 1838. His keen eye for picturesque composition and his consummate precision are comparable to the work of the leading history painter and portraitist of the period, J. A. D. Ingres, who was a close friend. Turpin’s talent and his royalist sympathies combined to cement his success after the restoration of the Bourbon monarchy in 1815.
Inscription: Monogrammed and dated (right center): T. T. / 1818 / 1838
private collection (until 1929; sale, Collection de Madame X. . ., Hôtel Drouot, Paris, February 25, 1929, no. 62, as "Vue prise à l'intérieur du Colisée de Rome," by T. T. [XIXe siècle], support identified as canvas measuring 29 x 22 cm); [Galerie Talabardon, Paris, 1995]; sale, Sotheby's, New York, November 10, 1998, no. 65, for $48,300; Eugene V. Thaw, New York (by 2002–9)
New York. Pierpont Morgan Library. "The Thaw Collection: Master Drawings and Oil Sketches, Acquisitions Since 1994," September 27, 2002–January 19, 2003, no. 82.
Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art. "The Romantic Prospect: Plein Air Painters, 1780–1850," June 22–August 15, 2004, no. 22.
Sydney. Art Gallery of New South Wales. "Plein-air Painting in Europe, 1780–1850," September 4–October 31, 2004, no. 22.
Melbourne. National Gallery of Victoria. "Plein-air Painting in Europe, 1780–1850," November 19, 2004–January 16, 2005, no. 22.
Musée des Beaux-Arts d'Angers. "Lancelot-Théodore Turpin de Crissé (Paris, 1782–id., 1859), peintre et dessinateur," December 16, 2006–April 15, 2007, no. 16 (as "L'Arc de Constantin vu du Colisée," lent by the Thaw Collection, The Pierpont Morgan Library).
Boulogne-Billancourt. Bibliothèque Marmottan. "Lancelot-Théodore Turpin de Crissé (Paris, 1782–id., 1859), peintre et dessinateur," May 10–June 30, 2007, no. 16.
New York. Morgan Library & Museum. "City of the Soul: Rome and the Romantics," June 17–September 11, 2016.
Jennifer Tonkovich inThe Thaw Collection: Master Drawings and Oil Sketches, Acquisitions Since 1994. Exh. cat., Pierpont Morgan Library. New York, 2002, pp. 180–81, no. 82, ill. (color).
Bertrand Talabardon and Bertrand Gautier. Le paysage français de Valenciennes à Bonington. Exh. cat., Talabardon & Gautier. Paris, 2002, unpaginated, fig. 3, call it "L'Arc de Constantin vu à travers une arche du Colisée" and locate it in a private collection.
Charlotte Gere inPlein-Air Painting in Europe, 1780–1850. Exh. cat., Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art. Shizuoka, 2004, pp. 64–65, no. 22, ill. (color), as in the Thaw Collection, the Pierpont Morgan Library.
Caroline Chaine inLancelot-Théodore Turpin de Crissé, peintre et collectionneur, Paris, 1782–1859. Exh. cat., Musée des Beaux-Arts d'Angers. Paris, 2006, p. 80, no. 16, ill. (color), notes that this is the first painting by the artist to be dated twice, stating that 1818 corresponds to a first sketch drawn before the motif and that it was completed in the artist's studio in 1838.
Bertrand Talabardon and Bertrand Gautier. Le XIXe siècle. Exh. cat., Talabardon & Gautier. Paris, 2008, unpaginated, fig. 1, under no. 8, as in a private collection, New York.
Patrick Le Nouëne inDisegni romani di Lancelot-Théodore Turpin de Crissé (1782–1859) dalle collezioni del Louvre. Exh. cat., Museo Mario Praz. Rome, 2009, p. 22, fig. 5 (color).
John House. "Impressionism and the Open-Air Oil Sketch." Studying Nature: Oil Sketches from the Thaw Collection. Ed. Jennifer Tonkovich. New York, 2011, p. 88, fig. 69 (color), states that it is "an étude in format and conception but one that was worked up into a strikingly informal and small tableau".
Esther Bell. "Catalogue Raisonné of the Thaw Collection." Studying Nature: Oil Sketches from the Thaw Collection. Ed. Jennifer Tonkovich. New York, 2011, p. 144, no. 128, ill. (color), calls it "The Arch of Constantine Seen from the Colosseum" and dates it 1818–38.