Skip to contentSkip to navigation

Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal)

Interior of San Marco, Venice


Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal)
Venice 1697 – Venice 1768


Interior of San Marco, Venice


About 1740-1745


Oil on canvas


44.1 x 31.5 cm


Adaline Van Horne Bequest, inv. 1945.871


Western Art

No artist is more closely associated with vedute, the views of Venice, than Canaletto, who attracted the patronage of wealthy tourists at a time when the Grand Tour was becoming fashionable. His paintings were sought after as “souvenirs” for aristocrats and distinguished visitors, and were also prized by those who would themselves have wished to travel to Italy. His views of Venice are often composite studies. He would convincingly manipulate perspective to enhance dramatic effect. These characteristics are apparent in this interior view — unusual in his works — of the famous eleventh-century Byzantine Basilica of San Marco. Rich in ornamentation, the painting is full of incident: a priest officiating at the left, praying worshippers and wandering visitors.

Add a touch of culture to your inbox
Subscribe to the Museum newsletter

Bourgie Hall Newsletter sign up