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Venice: Entrance to the Cannaregio
Imitator of Francesco Guardi
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Venetian artists Canaletto and Guardi specialised in view paintings, which were so popular with local and foreign collectors in eighteenth-century Venice that countless imitations were made. These made their way, alongside genuine works by both artists, into art collections throughout Europe. Despite this painting entering the National Gallery’s collection as by Guardi, it is now attributed to a nineteenth-century imitator.

This composition is taken in part from an engraving of 1735 by Visentini (Royal Collection, Windsor), after Canaletto’s painting of the same scene. The unknown artist has altered the view, narrowing the canal, bringing the bridge closer and adding a stone quay occupied by smartly dressed people to the foreground. There has been an attempt to adopt Guardi’s style, with lively brushwork to convey poses and costumes, and hard, dark outlines to describe the buildings.

Key facts
Artist Imitator of Francesco Guardi
Artist dates 1712 - 1793
Full title Venice: Entrance to the Cannaregio
Date made probably 19th century
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 36.2 x 53.7 cm
Acquisition credit Bequeathed by John Henderson, 1879
Inventory number NG1054
Location in Gallery Not on display
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