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François-Marius Granet, Tivoli Roofs

Key facts
Full title Tivoli Roofs
Artist François-Marius Granet
Artist dates 1775 - 1849
Date made about 1810
Medium and support Oil on paper laid down on canvas
Dimensions 26 × 24 cm
Acquisition credit Presented by the Lishawa family, 2018
Inventory number NG6672
Location Room 42
Collection Main Collection
Tivoli Roofs
François-Marius Granet

Originally from Aix-en-Provence, François-Marius Granet studied with both Jean-Antoine Constantin and Jacques-Louis David. In 1802 he travelled to Rome with Comte Auguste de Forbin (1777 -1841) (later curator of the Louvre) for a brief visit; he returned soon after for a stay of 21 years, only returning to France in 1824. While in Rome he was taught by Simon Denis. Granet was particularly drawn to the textures, colours and forms of the city’s architecture, and indeed earned money selling drawings of ancient monuments.

Here he has depicted a tightly packed cluster of houses, roofs and arches. Using dilute paint with a degree of transparency, he has created a homogenous surface of warm browns and greys, punctuated with darker windows and doors. The expressive brushstrokes in the thin paint lend a sense of wear and decay to the buildings. By contrast, the luminous sky is painted smoothly.

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