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A Summer Evening ('On the Arno' - II)
Private Collection, England / Photograph by John Hammond
Richard Wilson (1713/14-1782)
A Summer Evening ('On the Arno' - II)
c.1772 (undated)
Oil on canvas
42.5 x 44.5 cm
16 3/4 x 17 7/8 in.
Private Collection, England
BB31
P97
An Italianate rural landscape, with a high foreground overlooking a wide river with a fallen tree trunk to the left and a boy fishing with a seated girl and her baby to the right. In the middle distance is a broad stretch of water with a rocky cliff in the background to the right, surmounted by a castle. There is a shallow bank to the left, with hazy plains and mountains in the distance. The delicate light, conveyed through soft colouring, is reflected in the river and enhances the sense of space.
Conwy 2009 (27); Weston 2011 (27); Gainsborough's House 2014 (unnumbered)
Benjamin Booth; the Revd James Ford; Edmund Ford; Robert Ford; his daughter, Mrs Rogers; Lionel Edwards of Penrose; 1961 bequeathed to his wife's niece, Joanna, Lady Ford; thence by descent
E72/9 Thomas Hastings after Wilson, View in Italy, The British Museum (1854,0708.66) and other impressions
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A version was offered at Bonhams, Knightsbridge sale 29 April 2015 (217)
Wilson spent much of the 1750s in Italy and produced paintings of Italian scenes for the rest of his life. However, he also painted views of his native Wales and it is sometimes difficult to be sure, as with this painting, whether he meant to evoke the Arno, the Po, the Tiber or the Dee valley. The composition is similar to that found in many of his views, combining topographical detail, often studied in North Wales and Cheshire, with some artistic licence. There are many surviving versions of this picture, an archetypal 'good breeder'. This is one of two versions of the composition originally in the Booth collection.
Booth Notes, Doc. 9 (*26); WGC pp. 75, 213-14, pl. 100b (Booth version 2); Walpole Society 1998-I, p. 18, BB31