"Every day for a year, I have been climbing Mount Vesuvius to work. Every day, it takes 6 hours to go, to come back, and to climb to the cone on the back of a horse." This is what Giuseppe De Nittis, who had returned to Italy between 1871 and 1872 because of the Franco-Prussian War which had caused him to flee from Paris in 1868, wrote in his journal. On his return to Italy, he turned his attention to the landscape that had preoccupied him and his companions at the so-called "Resina School," focusing on views of Vesuvius. He created several small boards (approximately 70) that are today scattered across public and private collections. These 12 oil-based works are an important nucleus of his works around the theme of Vesuvius, which had always been a source of fascination for artists and travelers. Here, it is treated with an almost scientific attitude and with a surprisingly modern pictorial quality. The artist exploits the observational speed and irreverent execution he developed through contact with French Impressionists.


  • Title: Twelve Studies of Vesuvius
  • Creator: Giuseppe De Nittis
  • Creator Lifespan: 1846/1884
  • Date: 1872/1872
  • Physical Location: Galleria d'Arte Moderna di Milano
  • gift: Italy
  • Physical Dimensions: w18 x h13 cm
  • Provenance: Donation
  • Type: painting
  • Medium: oil on panel

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