Director of the French Academy in Rome from 1751 to 1775, Natoire taught many young French artists, including Hubert Robert and Jean Honoré Fragonard. During this period he received occasional commissions for paintings but increasingly devoted his time to landscape drawings, often worked up in watercolor. The Villa d’Este in Tivoli, outside Rome, was a favorite destination for Natoire and his students, popular for its dramatic vistas featuring fountains and statues set amid lush foliage. In this example, we see the Fountain of the Water Organ flanked by trees, with a cascade falling below. Invented figures enliven the foreground.
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Title:Gardens of the Villa d'Este at Tivoli
Artist:Charles Joseph Natoire (French, Nîmes 1700–1777 Castel Gandolfo)
Medium:Pen and brown ink, brush and brown and gray wash, watercolor, heightened with white, over black and red chalk
Dimensions:12 5/16 x 18 11/16 in. (31.3 x 47.5 cm)
Credit Line:Rogers Fund, 1965
Inscription: Inscribed in pen and brown ink at the lower right, in the artist's hand: "villa d'est, en Tyvoly/ aprille, 1760./C.N."
Sotheby's, London , March 25, 1965, lot 125; Vendor: Colnaghi, New York
Dayton Art Institute. "French Artists in Italy, 1600-1900," October 15, 1971–November 28, 1971.
William Benton Museum of Art, University of Connecticut. "The Academy of Europe: Rome in the Eighteenth Century," October 13, 1973–November 21, 1973.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions 1965–1975," December 6, 1975–March 23, 1976.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Artists in Rome in the 18th Century: Drawings and Prints," February 28–May 7, 1978.
Colnaghi, New York. "Claude to Corot. The Development of Landscape Painting in France," November 1, 1990–December 15, 1990.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Eighteenth-Century French Drawings in New York Collections," February 3–April 25, 1999.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," February 11–April 28, 2014.
Musée des Beaux-Arts de Valenciennes. "Rêveries italiennes," September 25, 2015–January 17, 2016.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Fragonard: Drawing Triumphant," October 6, 2016–January 8, 2017.
Bean and Turcic 1986.208, Duclaux 1991.43
Ekhart Berckenhagen Die französischen Zeichnungen der Kunstbibliothek Berlin. Staatliche Museen Preussischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin, 1970, cat. no. under no. 3007, p. 240.
Jane van Nuis Cahill French Artists in Italy, 1600-1900. Exh. cat. The Dayton Art Institute, Dayton, OH. Dayton, Ohio, 1971, cat. no. 10, ill.
Linda Boyer Gillies, Colta Ives French Drawings and Prints of the Eighteenth Century. Ex. cat. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1972, cat. no. 35.
Pierre Rosenberg French Master Drawings of the 17th and 18th Centuries in North American Collections. Ex. cat., Art Gallery of Ontario, 2 Sept. - 15 Oct., National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada, 3 Nov. - 17 Dec. 1972, California Palace of the Legion of Honor, 12 Jan. - 11 Mar. 1973. Toronto, 1972, cat. no. under no. 99, p. 187.
Frederick den Broeder The Academy of Europe, Rome in the 18th Century. William Benton Museum of Art, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, Oct. 13-Nov. 21, 1973, cat. no. 63, fig. no. 18.
Jacob Bean "Drawings." The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1965-1975. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975, p. 54, ill.
Jacob Bean Patterns of Collecting: Selected Acquisitions, 1965-1975. Explanatory texts accompanying an exhibition. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975, p. 54, ill.
Andrea Busiri Vici "Paesistica Romana di Charles Natoire." Antichita Viva. no. 2, 1976, fig. no. 17, pp. 40-41, ill.
Jacob Bean Artists in Rome in the 18th Century: Drawings and Prints Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (February 7 - May 7, 1978). New York, 1978.
Jacob Bean, Lawrence Turčić 15th-18th Century French Drawings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1986, cat. no. 208, p. 189, ill.
Jennifer Montagu "Quand un musée s'expose: des dessins français du 15e au 18e siècle, Metropolitan Museum, New York." in Connaissance des Arts. no. 416, Paris, October 1986, pp. 88-89, ill.
Pierre Rosenberg, Katharine Baetjer Fragonard. Ex. cat.: Grand Palais, Paris, 24 Sept. 1987-4 Jan. 1988 and Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2 Feb.-8 May, 1988. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Paris and New York, 1987, cat. no. under no. 35, fig. no. 4, p. 114.
Claude to Corot. The Development of Landscape Painting in France. Ex. cat. Edited by Alan Wintermute, Colnaghi, New York, New York, November 1-December 15, 1990, cat. no. 33, pp. 182-184, ill.
Lise Duclaux Charles Natoire, 1700-1777. Galerie de Bayser, Paris, Cahiers du dessin français, no. 8, Paris, 1991, cat. no. 43, p. 30, ill.
Perrin Stein, Mary Tavener Holmes Eighteenth-Century French Drawings in New York Collections Exh. cat. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1999, cat. no. 44, pp. 100-102, ill.
Pierre Rosenberg, Claudine Lebrun Jouve Les Fragonard de Besançon. Exh. cat., Musée des beaux-arts et d'archéologie de Besançon, Besançon, Dec. 8, 2006-Apr. 2, 2007. Besançon, 2006, fig. no. pl. 21, fig. 23, pp. 51, 73, ill.
Susanna Caviglia-Brunel Charles-Joseph Natoire, 1700-1777. Paris, 2012, cat. no. D. 716, 463, ill.
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