Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto). Equestrian Portrait of the King of Poland’s Page Gintowt, 1773

Lot 16. Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780). „Equestrian Portrait of the King of Poland’s Page Gintowt“, 1773, oil on canvas, 60 x 55.5 cm. Estimate: € 250.000 – 500.000. ImKinsky. 11/08/22. Sold 730,000 euro

Myślę, że minister Gliński, zamiast wykładać kasę na współczesne badziewie, powinien dość agresywnie licytować tę pracę lub może nawet zawrzeć ugodę przed aukcją. Inny tytuł tego portretu to “The royal page Gintowt on horseback attended by a groom in royal livery”.


Commissioned in 1773 by Stanislas-August Poniatowski, King of Poland;
his collection, Royal Palace of Warsaw;
Prince Joseph Poniatwoski, Belvedere Palace, Warsaw, 1798;
Henry Kent, Florence 1910-11;
Private collection, France;
Sotheby’s Monaco, 5 December 1991, lot 167;
collection Erna Weidinger (1923–2021)


Milan 1910, Le tre espositioni rettrospecttive MCMVIII-MCMX. Mostra Miniature e ventagli, Giovanni Carnevali detto il Piccio, ritrati del settecento, p. 72, no. 18, pl. XIII
Florence 1911, Mostra del ritratto italiano dalla fine del sec. XVI all’ anno 1861, p. 80, no. 13


Catalogue des tableaux appart enant a sa Majeste le Roi de Pologne, Varsovie, Chateau Royal, 1795, no. 459 (catalogue manuscrit publie dans Mankowsk i [op. cit. infra])
Sebastiano Ciampi, Bibliografia critica delle antiche reciproche corrispondenze, vol. II., Florence 1839, p. 237, no. 34
E. Ratawiecki, Slownik malarzow polski ch tudziez obcych w Polsee osiadlych lub czasowo w niej przebywajncych, Warsaw, 1850, vol. I, p. 55, no. 35
Ramond Foumier-Sarloveze, les peintres de Stanislas-Auguste II, Roi de Pologne, Paris, 1907, p. 144, no. 459
A. Koltonski, “Wystawa portetu we Florencyi” in: Sfinks, November 1911, no 47, p. 258
Pawel Ettinger, “Bellotto v Varshave” in: Stariye Godiy, October-December 1914, pp. 13-14
Tadeusz Mankowski , Galerja Stanislawa Augusta, vol. 1, Lwow, 1932, pp. 62, 161
Hellmuth Allwill Fritzsche, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto, Burg b. Magedburg 1936, p. 126, no. 197
Egidio Martini, La Pittura veniziana de/ Settecento, Venice, 1964, pl. 218
Barbara Krol-Kaczorowska, “Svolta di lavori fomiti alla Corte di Varsovia ed altri documenti bellotiani del periodo polacco” in: Bulletin du Musee National de Varsovie, 1966, VII, p. 68
Stefan Kozakiewicz, “Ricostruzione di un gruppo di dipinti bellotiani del periodo polacco” in: Bulletin du Musee National de Varsovie, 1967, VIII, no. 1-2, pp. 32-45, (fig. 9, p. 39)
Stefan Kozakiewicz, Bernardo Bellotto, London1972, vol. II, cat.-no. 434, pp. 390-391;
Ettore Camesasca, l’ Opera completa del Bellotto, Milan, 1974, p. 116, no. 253
Alberto Rizzi, Bernardo Bellotto. Warschauer Veduten, Munich 1991, p. 133;
Bozena Anna Kowalczyk, Bellotto and Canaletto. Wonder and Light, Milan 2017, p. 268 (colour ill.)

The painting is part of a series of four well-known equestrian or horse portraits by Bernardo Bellotto and was created for the Polish King Stanislaus II August Poniatowski (1732-1798). In 1773, Bellotto noted in his records of works delivered for the court: “quattro picolli quadri di invenzione con cavalli presi dalla natura e Figure…”, for which he had received the sum of 200 ducats in total (Kozakiewicz, 1972, p. 388).
While two of these paintings, “Colonel Königsfels teaching Prince Joseph Poniatowski how to ride” (fig. 1) and “Stable boy leading a horse” (fig. 2), are now in the National Museum in Warsaw, the “Equestrian Portrait of a Hussar Officer” (fig. 3) is in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna (cf. Kozakiewicz, 1972, pp. 387-91, nos. 431-433). The whereabouts of the present work were unknown for a long time. Around 1910/11 it was documented through exhibitions and a black-and-white illustration in the Kent Collection, Florence, until it finally reappeared at an auction in Monaco in 1991, coming from a French private collection. In 2017, it was then illustrated in colour (probably for the first time) in a scientific publication by Bozena Anna Kowalczyk (Kowalczyk 2017, p. 268).

The almost square series of four – created for the Polish king – consists of two slightly horizontal formats and two slightly vertical formats. Presumably due to a lack of documentation, however, the literature gives the same dimensions for this painting as for the work in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, while the illustration in the exhibition catalogue of 1910 corresponds to today’s image. A comparable Capricci series by Bellotto with different formats, two horizontal and two vertical formats, can be found in the Galleria Nazionale in Parma (cf. Kowalczyk 2017, pp. 268 and 148).
The two Warsaw paintings depict horses and figures against the background of an imaginative, monumental Baroque architecture with palace wings, porticos, and an arcade; while the two vertical works show the proud horsemen riding out in a southern, equally imaginary landscape, which contains Capricci-like structures in the background. All four works are connected by the brilliant white horses that dominate them. The uniforms, glowing in red and green, also run through the paintings as a unifying element.

In contrast to the poses of the other works, the “Page Gintowt” and his white horse are depicted almost frontally. Both look up at the viewer and seem almost to be riding towards them. Alberto Rizzi describes this emotional expressive unity of horse and rider as follows: “This rider, seated in the saddle with Anglo-Saxon confidence, is somewhat reminiscent of those servants who adopt the manner of their masters, caricaturing them in the process… The young man’s upper body, as well as the head of his no less elegant horse, stand out against the sky, an effect that lends the depiction a majestic character.” (cf. Rizzi 1991, p. 133).
The subject is clearly identified by the original title “Le page Gintowt à cheval, suivi d’un palfrenier à livrée du Roi”, listed in the 1795 catalogue of the gallery of King Stanislaus II August Poniatowski (Mankowski 1932). Stefan Kozakiewicz devoted a separate essay to this group of horse paintings in 1967 and notes that the rider is wearing the Polish officer’s uniform, in contrast to the title (“Nobleman in Saxon Costume”) that was incorrectly transmitted in earlier exhibitions. It is possibly Celestino Dziewialtowski Gintowt, later Major of the Royal Army and Adjutant General to the King (“È probabilmente Celestino Dziewialtowski Gintowt, figlio di Antonio, nel 1779 maggiore dell’esercito della Corona, nel 1780 aiutante di campo generale del re”, cf. Kozakiewicz 1967, p. 42, footnote 21).

Even though the roots of such depictions of horses in the context of portraits of rulers or illustrations of riding schools go back to the 16th century, this series is unique in Bellotto’s oeuvre. They are the artist’s first genre paintings. “Although scenes from real life played a major role in his vedute, they were never before the main subject of representation. The fact that they became such in the Warsaw period corresponds to the greater importance that the staffage generally assumed in the views from that period. Even if they were not given a leading position in the vedute, they were still in full harmony with the real surroundings; here, however, where they are the main subject, the artist places them in an unreal setting”. Whereas until now horses had only been staffage elements in Bellotto’s vedute, here they become the protagonists. Both the figures depicted are certain people close to the court and the horses were presumably studied directly by Bellotto in the royal stables – “presi dalla natura”, as the artist himself notes. “The artist probably received the inspiration for these paintings from the king while working on the large “View of Warsaw from the Terrace of the Royal Castle” (fig. 4), painted in the same year 1773: it had familiarised Bellotto with the subjects and persons of his first genre paintings.” (cf. Kozakiewicz 1972, vol. 1, pp. 165 + 174ff.).
In addition to the preferences of his royal patron, the artist’s own interest in horses probably also played a major role in the creation of these late works – Bellotto died in Warsaw in 1780 as a result of a stroke. Trained in the workshop of his famous uncle Antonio Canal (1697-1768), whose nickname “Canaletto” he subsequently adopted, Bernardo Bellotto specialised primarily in vedute: first, following the tradition, of his native Venice, then later the cities of his respective clients, such as Dresden, Munich, Vienna and finally Warsaw. In “Capricci with the Capitol” (Galleria Nazionale, Parma), painted in 1746, Bellotto used a horse as a striking figure element for the first time. From then on, horses, riders and carriages increasingly played a role as staffage in his capricci and vedute. In addition to his own studies, the depictions of contemporary artist colleagues, such as the famous English horse painter George Stubbs (1724-1806), presumably also served as inspiration (cf. Kowalczyk 2017, pp. 268 and 148).

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto). Venice, the Grand Canal with the Rialto Bridge seen from the South

Lot 15. BERNARDO BELLOTTO (VENICE 1721-1780 WARSAW). Venice, the Grand Canal with the Rialto Bridge seen from the South, oil on canvas, 24 x 36 in. (60.7 x 91.5 cm.). Estimate $2,500,000 – 3,500,000. Christie’s. 10/20/22. Sold $1,300,000

Provenance: (Probably) supplied to Henry Fiennes Pelham-Clinton, 2nd Duke of Newcastle-under-Lyne (1720-1794), Clumber Park, in 1741, and then by descent at Clumber House, Nottinghamshire, where first recorded in his posthumous inventory of 1794, through his third but older surviving son,
Thomas, 3rd Duke of Newcastle (1752-1795), and by descent to his son,
Henry Pelham, 4th Duke of Newcastle (1785-1851), and by descent to his son,
Henry Pelham, 5th Duke of Newcastle (1811-1864), and by descent to his son,
Henry Pelham Alexander, 6th Duke of Newcastle (1834-1879), and by descent to his son,
Henry Pelham Archibald Douglas, 7th Duke of Newcastle (1864-1928), by whom bequeathed to his nephew,
Henry Edward Hugh Earl of Lincoln, later 9th Duke of Newcastle (1864-1928); his sale, [The Property of the Honourable the Earl of Lincoln Inherited under the will of the late Henry Pelham Archibald Douglas Pelham-Clinton]; Christie’s, London, 31 March 1939, lot 7, as ‘A. Canaletto’ (285 gns. to Assher and Welcker).
with Edward Speelman, London.
J.S. Sykes.

Anonymous sale; Sotheby’s, London, 8 December 1971, lot 38, as ‘Antonio Canale, called Canaletto’ (£22,000 to T. Parkinson).
[Property of a European Gentleman]; Sotheby’s, New York, 17 January 1986, lot 125, as ‘Giovanni Antonio Canale, called Canaletto, and Studio’.
with Harari & Johns, Ltd., London, as ‘Giovanni Antonio Canal, Called Canaletto’, until 1987.
Acquired by Ann and Gordon Getty from the above.


Catalogue of pictures being part of the Clumber Collection, 1872, no. 55, 58, 73, or 74.
A. Graves, A Century of Loan Exhibitons, 1813-1912, I, 1913, pp. 143 and 145, as ‘Canaletto’.
W.J. Hipkin, Descriptive catalogue of the Pictures, etc. at Clumber House, London, 1923, no. 36.
W.G. Constable, Canaletto: Giovanni Antonio Canal 1697-1786, II, second edition, Oxford, 1976, pp. 296-297, no. 228 b1, as ‘Studio of Canaletto’; 2nd edition, II, revised by J. Links, 1976, pp. 296-7.
‌J. Ingamells, The Wallace Collection, Catalogue of Pictures, I, British, German, Italian, Spanish, London, 1985, p. 239, under no. P511, under versions.


(Possibly) London, British Institution 1853, among nos. 98, 103, 113 and 118, all lent by the Duke of Newcastle, as ‘Canaletto’.
London, British Institution, 1858, no. 77, as ‘Canaletto’.
London, British Institution, 1866, no. 77, as ‘Canaletto’.
Nottingham, Nottingham Museum and Art Gallery, 1879, nos. 98, 103, 113 and 118, all lent by the Duke of Newcastle, as ‘Canaletto’.
Nottingham, Nottingham Museum and Art Gallery, 1933, as ‘Canaletto’.

Warto popatrzeć i przyjrzeć się tym dwóm obrazom. Pierwszy z Christie’s ma światową proweniencję, o świetle i perspektywie jakiej później pomarzyć tylko. Ten drugi, z niemieckiego Hampla, który jest opisany jako atrybucja, to daleko mu do atrybucji tak jak daleko Hamplowi do handlu pracami autentycznymi. Słowo ‘atrybucja’ jest u Hampla tak rozciągliwe jak guma w portkach. A propos zakupu to co wolelibyście Państwo kupić: obraz Canaletta z Christie’s czy koło Fangora z Desy? Ceny są chyba podobne.

Obraz przypisany przez niemiecki dom aukcyjny Hampel

Lot 529. Bernardo Bellotto, 1721 Venedig – 1780 Warschau, Umkreis. Devant l’entrée du parc du château. Huile sur toile. Doublée de peinture.63 x 134 cm. Dans un cadre en bronze décoré en relief. Une clôture de parc divisée par des bustes d’hermès délimite un parc de château en partie arboré et sert de toile de fond pour la représentation des personnages représentés ici en vêtements d’époque. Derrière, un bâtiment du château s’étend largement, dans l’esprit du vénitien Bernardo Bellotto. Estimate 8,000 – 10,000 euro. Hampel. 09/22/22

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto). View of Munich seen from the east

Otrzymałem pytanie dlaczego do tej pory nie dodałem obrazu Canaletta z aukcji w Szwajcarii. Moje zawahanie: obraz przedstawia panoramę dawnego Monachium a nie Warszawy. Czynię to jednak bo jeden z czytelników podał mi ważną wiadomość: Sztuki Piękne z Krakowa chcą kupić ten obraz by podarować go na pamiątkę piłkarzowi Lewandowskiemu, grającemu w Monachium. Dobry pomysł! 😊

Była właśnie okazja kupienia akwaforty tegoż artysty za marne 3,200 euro przedstawiającej nie Monachium lecz fragment Drezna. Też można podarować.

Lot 3062. BERNARDO BELLOTTO called CANALETTO AND LORENZO BELLOTTO (Venice 1721–1780 Warsaw) (Venice 1742–1770 Warsaw). View of Munich seen from the east. Circa 1762–1767. Oil on canvas. 69 × 119.5 cm. Opening 800,000 CHF. Koller. 10/01/21
– Collection of the Austrian Consul General Wünsch (born circa 1780).
– Collection of his daughter, Mrs. Jiricek-Wünsch (1818–1859).
– Via inheritance, collection of her husband, Leopold Zdeborsky (1815–1887), Prague (wax seal verso).
– Collection of his daughter, Sofie-Johanna Honsig von Jägerhain, Austria (daughter of Leopold and Johanna Zdeborsky, married to Julius Anton Honsig von Jägerhain).
– Collection of Julius Anton Honsig von Jägerhain (1849–1924).
– Collection of Ing. Heinrich Honsig, brother of Julius Anton Honsig von Jägerhain.
– With Sabin, London (via Karl Honsig, nephew and heir of Heinrich Honsig).
– With Karl Haberstock, Berlin, 1928.
– Maser Collection, Zurich, 1936.
– Heinrich Abel Collection, Munich, 1997.
– European private collection, since 2000.

Vienna 2005, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto. Europäische Veduten, Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna, 16.3.–19.6.2005, no. 30.

– Most likely exh. cat. Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto, Vienna 1965, p. 69.
– Andrzej Rottermund: Bernardo Bellotto’s Unknown View of Munich, Artibus et Historiae, no. 38, 1998, pp. 9–20.
– Bernardo Bellotto and the Capitals of Europe, exh. cat. Edgar Peters Bowron (ed.), New Haven / London 2001, p. 214.
– Karl Schütz: Bernardo Belotto, gen. Canaletto – Leben und Werk, Vernissage, no. 2/2005, pp. 6–23 (p. 13, ill.).
– Exh. cat. Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto. Europäische Veduten, (ed.) W. Seipel, Vienna 2005, cat. no. 30, pp. 152–153.
– Charles Beddington: Munich from Gasteig Hill, in: Selected Old Master Paintings, London 2011, pp. 54–55 (with ill.).
– Exh. cat. Canaletto – Bernardo Bellotto malt Europa, (ed.) Andreas Schumacher, Munich 2014, p. 254.

This rare view of Munich as seen from Gasteig Hill was discovered recently in a private collection and published by A. Rottermund as the third version of Bernardo Bellotto’s famous composition in the artist’s own hand (see Literature). The first version is in the Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Munich Residenz (inv. no. 111, dated 1761, oil on canvas, 125 x 220 cm) and a replica, on which it is assumed his son Lorenzo Bellotto (1742–1770) also worked, is now in the National Gallery of Art in Washington (Samuel H. Kress Foundation).

Bernardo Bellotto travelled from Vienna to Munich in 1761 and arrived there on 14 January with a letter of recommendation from Maria Theresa of Austria to Princess Maria Antonia Walpurgis Symphorosa of Bavaria (see H. A. Fritzsche: Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto, Burg b. Magdeburg 1936, pp. 68–70). Princess Maria Antonia of Bavaria was the sister of the Bavarian Elector and married to Frederick Christian Elector of Saxony, the eldest son and heir to the throne of Frederick August II. The couple were residing at the Munich court because of the Seven Years War. Bellotto painted for Maximilian III. Joseph Elector of Bavaria a large view of Munich and two of the summer residence at Nymphenburg, which are still in the Electoral Residence in Munich today. Gisela Barche surmises on the basis of the Bavarian and Saxon coat of arms, common to the original frames of the three paintings, that this was not a commission from the Bavarian Elector, but rather a gift from the Saxon princely couple to their hosts (see Gisela Barche: Bernardo Bellotto, Verona e le citta europee, Verona 1990, pp. 156–161).

Bellotto made replicas of these three views of about half the original size, two of which (View of Munich and a View of Nymphenburg) are now in the National Gallery of Art in Washington. According to Rottermund, the third known version of the View of Munich offered here, was probably made between 1762 and 1767, that is, after the artist’s return to Dresden, and is comparable in size to the version in the National Gallery of Art. During this period, commissions from the royal court decreased due to the death of King August III in Dresden, so Bellotto had to accept additional commissions. In addition, it is known that Bellotto, who was already working as a 14-year-old in the workshop of his uncle, the famous Venetian painter of vedute, Giovanni Antonio Canale called Canaletto (1697–1768), made numerous detailed drawings as preparation for his large compositions. He was thus able to have recourse to these preparatory drawings for later commissions and make replicas. In our version, Andrzej Rottermund and Charles Beddington consider it possible that Bellotto’s son Lorenzo contributed to the city view in the background, while Karl Schütz sees this as the exclusive work of Bernardo Bellotto (see Literature). The large-format copperplate engraving made in 1766 by Franz Xaver Jungwirth (1720–1790) seems, judging by the staffage, to be based on one of the two replicas, rather than on the first version in the Munich Residenz.

On the reverse of our painting, a label and a wax seal with the inscription “Prague” and the name “Leopold Zdeborsky” refer to the former owner Leopold Zdeborsky (1815–1887), who lived in Prague. Around 1840 he married Jiricek-Wünsch (1818–1859), who was the daughter of Consul General Wünsch (born 1780).

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto). Perspective de la Place de la grande Garde …”. Der Neumarkt in Dresden von der Moritzstraße aus

Lot 411. Bernardo Bellotto, gen. Canaletto 1721 Venedig – 1780 Warschau. “Perspective de la Place de la grande Garde …”. Der Neumarkt in Dresden von der Moritzstraße aus. Radierung auf Velin. 63 x 92,5 cm. Hinter Passepartoutblende montiert. Umlaufende Hinterlegungen des Plattenrandes. Min. fleckig. Rahmen. Estimate 1,500 – 1,800 euro. Neumeister. 09/23/21. Sold 3,200

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)

Bernardo Bellotto. Landscape capriccio with classical and medieval motifs and some buildings from Dresden

Malarz mający istotne miejsce w polskiej historii. Ten obraz Bellotta powstał sporo wcześniej przed przyjazdem do Warszawy ale warto go zachować i poczytać o jego proweniencji, wystawach, publikacjach i ogólnych informacjach o malarzu i obiekcie malowania. Dużo ciekawego do czytania poniżej z katalogu aukcyjnego. A propos proweniencji to chciałoby się taką skrupulatną widzieć w przypadku każdej innej sprzedawanej pracy. Inna uwaga to, moim zdaniem, absurdalnie niskie widełki wyceny za ten obraz. Gdyby ta praca została sprzedana za jedyne 100,000 euro to potrzeba sprzedać 4-5 podobnych prac tego artysty by zrównoważyc cenę jednego ‘koła’ Fangora. Kompletny absurd z cenami na ‘koła’.

Lot 28. Bernardo Bellotto (Venice 1721–1780 Warsaw). Landscape capriccio with classical and medieval motifs and some buildings from Dresden, oil on canvas, 49.5 x 80.5 cm, framed. Estimate 100,000 – 150,000 euro. Dorotheum. 10/23/19

Provenance: Collection of Sir William James Farrer (1822–1911), Sandhurst Lodge, Berkshire; his sale, Christie, Manson & Woods, London, 23 March 1912, lot 36; bought by Lippmann; Collection of Robert Zahn (1861–1914), Plauen; his sale, Hugo Helbig, Munich, 21 November 1917, lot 5; bought by A. S. Drey, Munich; Collection of Camillo Castiglioni (1897–1957), Vienna;
his sale, F. Muller & Cie., Amsterdam, 17 November 1925, lot 29; with Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 1926; Collection Sigmund Sachsel (1873–1928), Vienna; his sale, Dorotheum, Vienna, 5 June 1931, lot 1; with Galerie Sanct Lucas, Vienna, 1965; Private collection, Austria

Vienna, Belvedere Museum, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto, 29 April – 25 July 1965, no. 44;
Houston, Museum of Fine Arts, Bernardo Bellotto and the Capitals of Europe, 29 July – 21 October 2001, no. 83

I. Haumann, Das oberitalienische Landschaftsbild des Settecento, Strasbourg 1927, p. 79;
H. A. Fritzsche, Bernardo Belotto genannt Canaletto, Magdeburg 1936, pp. 65, 99–100, p. 124, VG 180, p. 125, mentioned under VG 189;
S. Kozakiewicz, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto: Ausstellung unter der Leitung von: Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Nationalmuseum Warschau, Kunsthistorische Museum Wien, exhibition catalogue, Vienna 1965, p. 59, no. 44, ill. no. 91;
S. Kozakiewicz, Bernardo Bellotto, Milan 1972, vol. I, p. 138, vol. II, pp. 283-284, no. 358, ill. p. 285;
E. Camesasca, L’opera completa del Bellotto, Milan 1974, no. 199;
A. Rizzi, Bernardo Bellotto. Dresda Vienna Monaco (1747-1766), Venice 1996, p. 161, no. 141;
E. P. Bowron, in: E. P. Bowron (ed.), Bernardo Bellotto and the Capitals of Europe, exhibition catalogue, New Haven/London 2001, p. 242, no. 83, ill. p. 243

The present painting is an important example of Bernardo Bellotto’s work during his second Dresden period, around 1765. At this time the painter concentrated on creating idealised views and capriccio paintings, a genre he had experimented with during his youth in Italy. These imaginary landscapes include real elements, as is the case with the present painting which represents an idyllic hilly landscape. In the background there are buildings inspired by the antique and the middle-ages, as well as recognisable monuments from the city of Dresden. On the left the still extant Zwinger Palace can be recognised, while the ruins at the centre are a probable reference to the Prussian bombardment of Dresden in 1760, during which time Bellotto also saw his home destroyed.

In the foreground a path cuts through the scene diagonally, leading to a bridge on the right. Under the arch of the bridge, another city is visible in the distance. The statue on a pedestal to the left hand side of the bridge is reminiscent of the same subject depicted by Bellotto in his earlier painting of the Karlskirche in Vienna (see Kozakiewicz 1972, vol. II, p. 200, no. 257). In the present painting the scene is animated by a number of country-folk, including a man in the foreground seated with his dog; this bearded figure is shown in different poses in other compositions by the artist, including the Imaginary view with Bellotto’s self-portrait in the National Museum, Warsaw.

The figures in the present painting are typical of Bellotto’s production during his second Dresden period, when the artist modelled the humble figures of his paintings directly from reality, almost with the intent of portraiture. The representation of the poor and marginal classes of society was rare in eighteenth century Italian painting, and the dignity with which Bellotto imbues them is reminiscent of Giacomo Ceruti’s paintings of mendicants and farming-folk. The style of the painting is typical of Bellotto during these years, it is characterised by bold fluid brushstrokes and the deployment of cool colours in compositions poised between the real and the imaginary, capturing a melancholy tone, which possibly reflects the suffering the artist himself experienced as a result of the war in the German city.

The present painting is known in another version that differs in some details: probably made by Bellotto in collaboration with his son Lorenzo (see Kozakiewicz 1972, vol. II, p. 284, no. 358a).

Bernardo Bellotto trained in Venice it is believed, under his uncle, Canaletto and from the outset he focused on the depiction of views of the city. His pictorial language attained an independence thanks to the journeys he took during the 1740s through the Veneto, Lombardy, Tuscany and to Rome. He travelled to Dresden for the first time in 1747 where he became court painter to Frederick Augustus II, Elector of Saxony. Here, he dedicated himself to the depiction of views of the city which was being remodelled during this period into one of the most important cultural centres of Europe. At the close of the next decade, he moved to Vienna, and then to Munich, thereafter returning to Dresden in 1761. Bellotto spent the final years of his career in Warsaw where he was engaged in the decoration of the royal palaces and he continued to produce view paintings for which he was celebrated throughout Europe.

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)


Lot 50. Bernardo Bellotto

VENICE 1722 – 1780 WARSAW


Oil on canvas
24 by 38 3/8  in.; 61 by 97.5 cm.


De Ville, Inc., Los Angeles, 1981
Anonymous sale (“Private Collection, Los Angeles”), New York, Christie’s, 18 June 1982, lot 87 (as by Canaletto)
Anonymous sale, London, Sotheby’s, 11 December 1985, lot 24 (as Attributed to Canaletto)
Acquired from the above sale by A. Alfred Taubman.


J.G. Links in W.G. Constable, Canaletto: Giovanni Antonio Canal 1697–1768,
2nd edition revised by J.G. Links reissued with Supplement and Additional Plates, Oxford, 1989, II, p. 731, no. 187(b).
M. Levey, The Later Italian Pictures in the Collection of Her Majesty the Queen, 2nd ed., Cambridge, 1991, p. 27, under no. 387.
M. Manzelli, Michele Marieschi e il suo alter-ego Francesco Albotto, Venice, 1991, p. 86, no. A.36.1, as by Francesco Albotto.
J.G. Links, Venice for Pleasure, 6th ed., London, 1998, p. 72, colour pls. 12-13, as by Canaletto.
M. Manzelli, Michele Marieschi e il suo alter-ego Francesco Albotto, Venice, 2nd ed., Venice, 2002, p. 127, no. A.36.1, illustrated, as by Francesco Albotto.

Catalogue Note

This beautiful view of the Grand Canal from the Campo di San Vio is an exciting rediscovery from Bellotto’s youthful period, circa 1742, painted while he was still in the studio of his uncle, Canaletto.  There are no fewer than twelve variants by Canaletto of this composition, which evidently must have held a particular appeal for him, since it is of more subtle charm than the majority of the subjects which were most popular with his clientele. Versions are in the National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh; the Gemäldegalerie, Dresden; the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid; the Kress Collection at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Tennessee; the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle; and the Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan, as well as in the collection of the Earl of Leicester at Holkham Hall and in other private collections (W.G. Constable, Canaletto: Giovanni Antonio Canal 1697–1768, II, London, 1962 [and editions of 1976 and 1989 revised by J.G. Links], nos. 182-192 and 191(b)).

This painting was clearly accepted by J.G. Links as the work of Canaletto. He published it in the ‘Supplementary Index’ at the end of his 1989 edition of W.G. Constable’s catalogue of the artist’s work, and selected it for illustration in the sixth edition of his popular Venetian guidebook Venice for Pleasure. That was published posthumously in 1998, and it was clearly due to an oversight that the description from the 1989 ‘Supplementary Index’ was not repeated in his Supplement to W.G. Constable’s Canaletto: Giovanni Antonio Canal 1697-1768, also published posthumously in the same year. It is surely due to this omission, and its inaccessibility in the Taubman Collection for more than thirty years, that the painting has evaded scholarly discussion.

The last fifteen years have seen dramatic advances in our knowledge of the early, Venetian, period of Canaletto’s nephew Bernardo Bellotto and a consequent expansion of his œuvre (see, for instance, C. Beddington, ‘Bernardo Bellotto and his circle in Italy, Part I: Not Canaletto but Bellotto’, The Burlington Magazine, CXLVI, No. 1219, October 2004, pp. 665-74, and B.A. Kowalczyk, Catalogue of the exhibition Canaletto e Bellotto: L’arte della veduta, Palazzo Bricherasio, Turin, 2008). In the light of these, the painting can be seen as characteristic of the re-workings of Canaletto’s compositions which were produced by his no less talented, and indeed extraordinarily precocious, nephew Bernardo Bellotto, during the years of his formation in his uncle’s studio.

In composition the painting is closest to Canaletto’s version in the Royal Collection, which is datable to around 1729, and it is, indeed, in many respects based upon it (Constable, op. cit., I, pl. 39; II, no. 184). That painting remained in Venice in the home of its first owner, Joseph Smith, later British Consul, until 1762. The entirely different colouring of the clothing here strongly suggests, however, that the source was the engraving after the Royal Collection version by Antonio Visentini, plate IV of the first edition of his celebrated set of prints after Canaletto, the Prospectus Magni Canalis Venetiarum published in 1735 (fig. 1).

This painting is far from a slavish copy. The large sailing boat which dominates the central section of Canaletto’s composition is here omitted; consequently the central gondola is moved higher up the picture plane, and is accompanied by a sandalo seen from the stern in sharp foreshortening. The sandalo to the immediate left of those replaces an entirely different one heading in the opposite direction in Canaletto’s painting. The cloud formations vary considerably. Here the figure types are entirely different, and a gentleman in a cape and tricorn shown in profile at lower right replaces a much more humble figure facing away from the viewer in Canaletto’s painting. The sailing boats next to the Dogana are different, and here there is a large ship moored in the Bacino di San Marco. The very distinctive areas on the wall of the Palazzo Barbarigo on the right where the stucco has decayed to reveal the brickwork below, and the staining of the stucco where rainwater has dripped lower down this wall and below the chimneys of the Palazzo Correr to the left are freshly introduced and exquisitely observed details. Such ‘improvements’ are characteristic of the young Bellotto’s versions of his uncle’s works.

As is almost invariably the case, Bellotto’s version is significantly larger than the prototype, which measures 18 ½ x 31 ⅛ in. Also characteristic of Bellotto’s style rather than his uncle’s are the application of the sky in diagonal strokes from upper right to lower left, the formula for the ripples in the water, and the widespread use of incising to establish the main lines of buildings and to run straight down for the reflections thereof. This last is not as evident as it is often in Bellotto’s work of this period due to the unusually good condition of this painting. The reflections themselves are executed in small horizontal strokes. The colouring is distinctive, with a copious use of black and a fairly cold light. The pale blue of the shirt of the man in the sailing boat on the left and the mauve of the shirt of the man seated on the steps on the right are characteristic Bellotto colours. The faces of the figures have tiny pink dots for noses and black dots for eyes and mouths. The young painter’s able hand is already able to render the contrasting textures of stucco, stone and sailcloth, and roof tiles are covered in tan dotting throughout.

Bellotto aimed, during his formative years, to cover all of his uncle’s more successful compositions, and it is perhaps surprising that this is the only painting of the subject by him known to survive. One other version is, however, recorded, that painted for Henry Howard, 4th Earl of Carlisle, who was in Venice on the Grand Tour from November 1738 for several months, for Castle Howard, where it was destroyed by fire in 1940 (fig. 2). Slightly smaller than this painting, it measured approximately 23 ¼ x 35 ¼ in. and its appearance is known from a photograph of the wall on which it hung in the ‘Canaletto Room’ at Castle Howard (see, for instance, D. Succi, Catalogue of the exhibition Bernardo Bellotto detto il Canaletto, Barchessa di Villa Morosini, Mirano, 1999, p. 53, fig. 34). From that it appears to follow Visentini’s engraving quite closely, although with a quay shown on the near side of the Campo di San Vio at bottom right, and with some variation in the cloud patterns. That painting may be presumed to have dated from 1739. In this painting traces of youthful uncertainty are confined to a hesitancy in the drawing of domes, and a residual tendency for boats to sit on rather than in water. Its confident handling and its extensive subtle deviations from the prototype suggest that it dates from a couple of years later, when Bellotto was already around twenty years old.

Sotheby’s would like to thank Charles Beddington for writing the catalogue essay for the present lot.

Estimate $1,500,000-2,000,000. Sothebys. 01/26/16

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)


Na Zamku Królewskim w Warszawie wisi ponad 20 płócien tego artysty.


Lot 48. Bernardo Bellotto (Venice 1721-1780 Warsaw)
Dresden from the Right Bank of the Elbe above the Augustus Bridge
oil on canvas
37 5/8 x 65 1/8 in. (95.6 x 165.4 cm.)


Johann Heinrich Christian Spahn (c. 1710/15-c. 1776/8), Saxon auditor-general, recorded in his inventory of 1766, no. 37, requisitioned and presented to
The Kurfürstliche Gemäldegalerie, Dresden, in 1778; de-accessioned in 1926 to
The Verein Haus Wettin, the trustees of the art collection of the former royal family of Saxony.
with H.M. Drey, London, where acquired on 17 October 1960 by
George Huntington Hartford II (1911-2008), New York; Sotheby’s, London, 24 March 1965, lot 92 (to the following),
with Leggatt Bros., London, where acquired on 30 March 1965 by the following,
Private collector, Atherton, California.
Acquired by the present owner in June 1994.

Pre-Lot Text



Vezeichnis eines in Dresden befindlichen Bilder-Cabinets. Mit einigen Anmerkungen, 1766, no. 37.
J. Hübner, Verzeichnis der Königlichen Gemälde-Gallerie zu Dresden, Dresden, 1865, no. 2339.
J. Hübner, Catalogue de la Galerie Royale de Dresde, Dresden, 1868, no. 2339.
K. Woermann, Katalog der königlichen Gemäldegalerie zu Dresden, Dresden, 1908, p. 17, no. 631.
H.A. Fritzsche, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto, Burg b. Magdeburg, 1936, pp. 53, 55-6, 77 and 109, VG51, no. 1d.
S. Kozakiewicz and W. Schumann, Bernardo Bellotto, genannt Canaletto in Dresden und Warschau, exhibition catalogue, Dresden, 1963, p. 77, no. 1d.
S. Kozakiewicz, in Bernardo Bellotto, genannt Canaletto, exhibition catalogue, Vienna, 1965, p. 98, no. 8d.
S. Kozakiewicz, ‘Eine Dresdener Ansicht von Bernardo Bellotto’, Pantheon, XXV, November/December 1967, pp. 405 and 445-451, illustrated.
S. Kozakiewicz, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto, Recklinghausen, 1972, I, pp. 86 and 104; II, pp. 108, 113 and 115, no. 143, illustrated.
E. Camesasca, L’Opera completa del Bellotto, Milan, 1974, p. 97, no. 77.
H. Keller, Dresden in Ansichten von Canaletto, Dortmund, 1985, p. 21.
A. Walther, Bernardo Bellotto genannt Canaletto: Ein Venezianer malte Dresden, Pirna und den Königstein, Dresden, 1995, pp. 23-24, no. 2.
A. Rizzi, Bernardo Bellotto: Dresda, Vienna, Monaco (1747-1766), Venice, 1996, p. 33, no. 4.
G.J.M. Weber, Dresden in the ages of splendor and enlightenment: eighteenth-century paintings from the Old Masters Picture Gallery, exhibition catalogue, Dresden, 1999, p. 56.
Bernardo Bellotto: Der Canaletto-Blick, exhibition catalogue, Dresden, 2011, pp. 16, 32, 33, 37 and 38.


New York, Huntington Hartford Gallery of Modern Art (and his private collection), March 1964-1965, on loan.
San Francisco, California Palace of the Legion of Honor.
London, National Gallery, on loan.
Verona, Museo di Castelvecchio, Bernardo Bellotto: Verona e le città europee, 15 June-16 September 1990, no. 43.
Venice, Museo Correr; and Houston, Museum of Fine Arts, Bernardo Bellotto and the Capitals of Europe, 10 February-21 October 2001, no. 55.
Turin, Palazzo Bricherasio, Canaletto e Bellotto: L’arte della veduta, 14 March-15 June 2008, no. 83.
Munich, Alte Pinakothek, Canaletto: Bernardo Bellotto malt Europa, 17 October 2014-8 February 2015, no. 38.

Estimate £8,000,000 – £12,000,000. Christies. 7/9/15

Bernardo Bellotto (Canaletto) (1720 – 1780)


Wprowadzam przez sentyment do późniejszej twórczości Bellotta powstałej w Rzeczpospolitej na zlecenie Stanisława Augusta Poniatowskiego.


Lot 15. BERNARDO BELLOTTO (VENISE 1720-VARSOVIE 1780). Caprice architectural avec une villa vénitienne et un pont de pierre. Toile, 48 x 79 cm
Formé dans l’atelier de son oncle Canaletto, Bernardo Belloto entreprend, en 1744, un périple dans les principales villes du nord de l’Italie (Vérone, Turin, Florence, Rome). Il s’installe à Dresde trois ans plus tard, appelé par Frédéric-Auguste II de Saxe, où il reste vingt ans puis ensuite à Varsovie où il devient le peintre officiel du roi Stanislas Auguste II Poniatowski.
Issu de l’imaginaire de l’artiste, ce caprice assemble plusieurs constructions qu’il avait vues durant ses voyages : une villa vénitienne avec loggia, reconnaissable à ses cheminées, les ruines du Forum de Rome, la citadelle de Padoue… unifiée par un contraste très marqué entre les ombres et une lumière cristalline caractéristique du peintre. L’atmosphère, le nuage dans les tons rosés et dorés, apportent une chaleur et une luminosité toute particulière. Ce tableau, daté vers 1760/1765, avait pour pendant une Vue de Parma conservée à l’Art Institute de Chicago.
Bibliographie :
– S. Kozakiewicz, Bernardo Bellotto, Milan, 1972, Tome II, p.189, n°246, repr. p.191
– Ettore Camesasca, L’opera completa del Bellotto, Classici dell’Arte Rizzoli, Milan, 1974, p. 95, n°73.
Provenance : vente anonyme, Londres, Christie’s, Manson & Woods, 29 novembre 1974, lot 99.

Estimate 600,000-800,000. Monte Carlo. 6/28/15