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Museums and Galleries

Art Market

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Thanks for your post.

I know this isn't the core issue in your argument, but I would still like to know who Canaletto's overlapping rivals were - Luca Carlevaris? Bernardo Bellotto? Giuseppe Moretti? who else?

Art History Today

It's really out of my comfort zone. It strikes me it's a title that has been made up by curators to promote the exhibition. One name that comes to mind is Guardi- but was he a rival?

Best- David


Very interesting. Like you mentioned, there often has been a mixture of the free market with art exhibitions. But this instance is especially interesting, given that the National Gallery part of the Department for Culture (i.e. a government institution). Huh. It will be interesting to see what else Sewell has to say on this matter, and see if the NG says anything in response.

Art History Today

Yes Monica, it will. I'm wondering if Sewell is settling scores here though. Somebody just reminded me he used to work for Christie's before turning full time art critic.


Canaletto (1679-1768) and Guardi (1712-93) were a generation apart, but that wouldn't disqualify them as rivals. Rather their goals and styles made them very different.

Canaletto recorded (with changes) the exact architectural details of the city scapes. Guardi was much more expressive and free in his evocations of the cityscape. Chalk and cheese.

Art History Today

Hels- Like I said, the theme of this show was dreamed up by curators- it probably bears no resemblance to the real situation.

Charles Beddington

Hels - All of the ten other painters covered by the exhibition were overlapping rivals of Canaletto, from Luca Carlevarijs in the 1720s to Francesco Guardi in the years 1758-68. They include Bellotto (and his brother Pietro Bellotti) although they were of course Canaletto's nephews and thus the 'rivalry' may (or may not) have been amicable. Lesser artists such as Giuseppe Moretti had to be omitted as space is quite limited at the NG. The commercial aspects of this rivalry are I hope covered to some extent in the catalogue, and I may develop some of them further in a talk at the NG on December 3rd.

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