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Gianbattista Piranesi
Mozano di Mestre, Venice 1720 – 1778 Rome

Ara Antica sopra la quale si facevano anticamente i sagrifizi, con altri ruine all’intorno
Ancient altar on which sacrifices were performed in antiquity, surrounded by other ruins

Gianbattista Piranesi, Mozano di Mestre, Venice 1720 – 1778 Rome. Ara Antica sopra la quale si facevano anticamente i sagrifizi, con altri ruine all’intorno. Original etching, c1747.

Ara Antica sopra la quale si facevano anticamente i sagrifizi, con altri ruine all’intorno
Ancient altar on which sacrifices were performed in antiquity, surrounded by other ruins
Robison 18 ii-iii/iv
242 x 348 mm
Original etching, c1747.
Lettered with Piranesi’s ‘signature’, the title and the plate number 7.
Before the addition of the later posthumous plate numbers.
From the 3rd or 4th issue of the 2nd edition of Prima Parte di Architetture e Prospettive inventate ed incise da Gio. Batta Piranesi, architetto Veneziano, as issued from the later 1750’s.
Unobtrusive printing crease.

£800

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Additional Information about the Print

Prima Parte di Architetture, e Prospettive
Piranesi’s first published work. The first issue, in 1743 comprised the title and twelve plates, the majority of which were grandiose imaginary architectural designs inspired by Piranesi’s personal reaction as an aspiring newly trained creative architect to the impact and colossal scale of Rome’s ancient ruins.
Buildings he would have liked to actually build, which he peopled with visitors or inhabitants in contemporary 18th century dress.

However, the title plate and just one or two other subjects were ‘romantic’ capriccio compositions in the spirit of Tiepolo. There was never a Seconda Parte di Architetture, e Prospettive; but in following years Piranesi added eight new plates, which include both of the subjects offered in this exhibition.

Gianbattista Piranesi, Mozano di Mestre, Venice 1720 – 1778 Rome. Ara Antica sopra la quale si facevano anticamente i sagrifizi, con altri ruine all’intorno. Original etching, c1747.

Ara Antica was a new, additional plate, first added, as plate 7, for the third issue of the first edition Prima Parte, 1747.

With its chiaroscuro composition of accumulated antique fragments, skulls and skeletal bones, an early indication of Piranesi’s proto-Romanticism, and related to the four capricci Grotteschi etchings of 1747.

Prints from Prima Parte in this exhibition are: