FRANCESCO ZUCCARELLI (Pitigliano 1702 - 1788 Florence)

Francesco Zuccarelli received his artistic training in Florence and subsequently Rome, where he studied under Paolo Anesi, a painter and etcher of capricci and vedute. After moving to Venice in the early 1730s, Zuccarelli devoted himself almost exclusively to painting pastoral landscapes. He quickly established himself as one of the leading artists in the city, and his work proved equally popular with Italian patrons and tourists on the Grand Tour. Notably, Zuccarelli’s paintings were collected by Francesco Algarotti, who commissioned works for the collection of king Augustus III in Dresden, as well as by the distinguished collectors Johann Matthias von Schulenberg and Joseph Smith, the British Consul in Venice from 1744.

The present composition has been dated to the 1740s, the period when Zuccarelli had already risen to prominence in Venice, but before his first trip to England. The painting is comparable to the works commissioned by Consul Smith for his villa in the first few years of the 1740s, including A River Landscape with Two Figures Embracing, signed and dated 1743, now in the collection of Her Majesty the Queen.

A Wooded River Landscape with Milkmaids

Oil on canvas, 117 x 132 cm.

Samuel Morley M.P., Hall Palace, Kent, and by descent;

New York, Colnaghi, Views from the Grand Tour, 1983, pp. 92-93, no. 51;
Gorizia, Palazzo della Torre, Le Meraviglie di Venezia. Dipinti del ’700 in collezioni private, 14 March-27 July 2008, catalogue no. 31, illustration p. 131.

E. Martini, Pittura veneta e altra italiana dal XV al XIX secolo, Rimini, 1992, p. 436, fig. 323;
F. Spadotto, Francesco Zuccarelli, Milan, 2007, p. 131, no. 183.