An Imaginary View of a Venetian Lagoon, with a Fortress by the Shore

Francesco Guardiabout 1750 - 1755

The J. Paul Getty Museum

The J. Paul Getty Museum
Los Angeles, United States

Francesco Guardi based this drawing on a picture much like one by Luca Carlevarijs, now in the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle, London. It is a capriccio, an imaginary view that was popular in Italy in the 1700s, and Guardi created many similar imaginary scenes of Venetian life. This scene is rendered in light brown tones, with both pen and ink, with wash. The shoreline is accented with white highlights. The combination of hazy brown shading and placid water gives the impression of a summer evening, just before sunset.


  • Title: An Imaginary View of a Venetian Lagoon, with a Fortress by the Shore
  • Creator: Francesco Guardi
  • Date: about 1750 - 1755
  • Physical Dimensions: 26.7 x 41.3 cm (10 1/2 x 16 1/4 in.)
  • External Link: Find out more about this object on the Museum website.
  • Medium: Pen and brown ink, brown wash, and little traces of underdrawing in black chalk
  • Source Credit Line: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  • Object Type: Drawing
  • Object Status: Permanent Collection
  • Number: 2002.36
  • Markings: Watermark: a bird in a coat of arm.
  • Inscription: Illegible graphite inscription at the lower right corner on the verso
  • Display Location: Not currently on view
  • Department: Drawings
  • Culture and Date: Italian, about 1750 - 1755
  • Culture: Italian
  • Classification: Drawings

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