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John Robert Cozens

John Robert Cozens (1752–1797)
Rome from the Villa Mellini
Watercolor, over preliminary drawing in pencil
Signed (?) at bottom center, in pen and black ink, Jn. Cozens
20 7/8 x 29 3/4 inches (531 x 757 mm)
Thaw Collection; EVT 36
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Cozens made two trips to Italy in the company of two important patrons: the first in 1776 with the antiquarian and connoisseur Richard Payne Knight and the second six years later with the wealthy young eccentric William Beckford. From sketches made on these trips, Cozens produced highly finished watercolors, such as this splendid view of Rome, which probably dates to the 1790s. This watercolor is the largest of three known versions of the subject by the artist; the other two are in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, and the British Museum, London.

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The programs of The Morgan Library & Museum are made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Background images: Photography by Todd Eberle unless otherwise noted. © 2006 Todd Eberle.