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Gianbattista Piranesi
Mozano di Mestre, Venice 1720 – 1778 Rome

Cinerary Urn ornamented with an Owl

Gianbattista Piranesi, Mozano di Mestre, Venice 1720 – 1778 Rome. Cinerary Urn ornamented with an Owl. Original etching.

Cinerary Urn ornamented with an Owl
Wilton-Ely 978
390 x 256 mm
Original etching, the plate signed.
Dedicated to Mr Egidio Earle.

£300

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Additional Information about the Print

The Vasi, candelabri, cippi, sarcophagi, tripodi, lucerne, ed ornamenti antichi disegnati ed incise dal Cav. Gio. Batt. Piranesi
(Vases, candelabra, grave stones, sarcophagi, tripods, lamps and ornaments designed and etched by Cavaliere Giovanni Battista Piranesi)

Increasingly after the death of Pope Clement XIII Piranesi relied on restoring and selling newly excavated antiquities to supplement his income from print selling. He had a ‘museum’ and showrooms as well as workshops in his home in Palazzo Tomati. His approach to the works he restored was creative and imaginative and had a great influence on interior design of the day.

From 1768 Piranesi published over a hundred individual plates of notable antiquities either for sale or in private collections, dedicated to individual customers, many of whom were members of the English aristocracy.

Piranesi’s son Francesco re-issued the plates, for the first time collectively, bound in two volumes, in 1778, the year of Piranesi’s death. For that or subsequent editions, the plates were numbered.

Gianbattista Piranesi, Mozano di Mestre, Venice 1720 – 1778 Rome. Cinerary Urn ornamented with an Owl. Original etching.

The funerary urn of Lucius Aurelius Terentus and of his wife Cecilia Ticherna, one of Piranesi’s collection of antiquities on show in his ‘museum’ at Palazzo Tomati.

This is the smaller of two etchings of this particular cinerary urn. In his caption Piranesi makes specific mention to the owl, as a symbol of Vigilance and the sphinxes, symbols of Prudence.

Prints from Vasi.. ed Ornamenti Antichi in this exhibition are: