Busiri, Giovanni Battista

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Busiri, Giovanni Battista
The Porta San Giovanni, Florence
Pen and brown ink on laid paper.
6 11/16 x 8 15/16 inches (170 x 227 mm)
The Joseph F. McCrindle Collection.

Giovanni Battista Busiri was a distinguished painter of perspectival and architectural vedute of Rome and its surroundings. His finest paintings, often executed in tempera, were acquired by English and Scottish tourists who passed through Rome on the Grand Tour (Francis W. Hawcroft, "The Cabinet at Felbrigg," The Connoisseur (May 1958), pp. 216-219). Busiri's imaginary and topographical views of Rome were typically executed in pen and brown ink, as in this example in The Morgan Library & Museum. The two most important collections of Busiri's drawings are in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge and the British Museum, London. The Fitzwilliam Museum's album with 93 studies includes Roman views, along with sketches of Pisa, Siena, Viterbo, Naples, Florence, and Marino (inv. 3963). As in the Morgan sheet, these drawings are characterized by a style that is quick and free, with an abundance of hatching. This drawing presents two figures before the Porta di San Giovanni, which is one of the gates in the Aurelian wall in Rome. There is a related drawing in the Busiri album at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge (inv. 3693 f.4), which depicts this structure from a different angle (Andrea Busiri Vici, Giovanni Battista Busiri, Vedutista romano del'700. Roma, 1966. p. 55).


Inscribed on verso in pen and brown ink, "Porta San Giovanni;" "60".
Watermark: Lamb with standard, inside double circle, surmounted by letter "A" (Agnus Dei or Paschal lamb).

Joseph F. McCrindle, New York (McCrindle collection no. B0028).
Associated names: 

McCrindle, Joseph F., former owner.