Venetian Canal

John Singer Sargent American

Not on view

Like many of his contemporaries, Sargent was captivated by Venice and visited the city frequently between 1898 and 1913. For the focal point of this watercolor, he chose the relatively obscure yet scenic eleventh-century tower of the Church of San Barnaba. He positioned himself close to the water, as if in a gondola, to present a view looking down the Rio de San Barnaba toward the Grand Canal. Sargent’s watercolors are admired for their fluid spontaneity, evident here in his rendering of the rippling water of the canal as it reflects the nearby architecture and bright sunlight. One contemporary critic celebrated Sargent’s powers of observation and representation when discussing this watercolor, explaining, "His sensitive faculties rejoice in the magic of Italian form and color."

Venetian Canal, John Singer Sargent (American, Florence 1856–1925 London), Watercolor and graphite on off-white wove paper, American

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