Piazza San Marco

Francesco Guardi Italian

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 644

This view can be compared to Canaletto’s picture of the same location painted forty years prior. Guardi’s technique is far looser and less adherent to the geometric ordering of the square, its pavement, and facades. Guardi employs a playful, illusionistic device by signing his name in the miniature canvas being carried by the man at lower right. It appears to depict something otherwise absent in this view of San Marco: gondolas and the choppy water of Venice’s famous canals.

Piazza San Marco, Francesco Guardi (Italian, Venice 1712–1793 Venice), Oil on canvas

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