Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720‑1778)


Italy, around 1775. XVIII century.
Copper engraving, laid paper.
Height: 58 cm
Length: 88.5 cm

Graphic artist, archaeologist, architect. An outstanding master of architectural landscapes. In 1740 he came to Rome, where he became interested in studying ancient architecture. He studied the art of metal engraving in the workshop of Giuseppe Vasi. From 1743 to 1747 he lived in Venice, where he worked together with Giovanni Battista Tiepolo. Then he returned to Rome again, where he lived for the next 25 years of his life. He became one of the most famous citizens of Rome. He created a multi-volume edition of etchings called “Roman Antiquities”, containing images of architectural monuments of ancient Rome, sculptural fragments, stone vases, candelabra, etc. Throughout his life he worked on a series of engravings “Views of Rome” (Vedute di Roma). These are large sheets (on average about 40 cm in height and 60-70 cm in width), which preserved for us the appearance of Rome in the 18th century.

The works are kept in the State Hermitage Museum, the John Soane Museum in London, the Louvre, the British Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Cini Foundation (Venice), the A.V. Scientific Research Museum of Architecture. Shchusev (Moscow), the Museum of the History of the Moscow Architectural School at the Moscow Architectural Institute (Moscow), the Russian State Archive of Literature and Art (Moscow), the International Architectural Charitable Foundation named after Yakov Chernikhov (Moscow), the Central Institute of Graphics (Rome), as well as other major museum and private collections around the world.