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Profile Portrait of a Young Woman. Engraving after Giovanni Battista Piazzetta. 45 x 34.6 cm. Nagler 48, Ravà 268. Watermark: FC, Bromberg 29 (fragment).
Marco Alvise Pitteri worked throughout his life in his native city of Venice, where from about the 1720s onwards he became one of the main producers of prints inspired by the works of his master and intimate friend, Giovanni Battista Piazzetta. He gained special recognition for a series of fifteen large-sized portraits of the Apostles, God the Father and Christ and Mary, applying for a privilege to publish them in 1742. In addition to reproductive engravings after Piazzetta, Pitteri produced other high-quality, technically sophisticated reproductive prints after Pietro Longhi, Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, Jusepe de Ribera and others.
The artist developed a very independent way of working, which involved using rising and subsiding parallel lines of varying thickness to produce lines which merge to form fine, grid-like patterns, thereby frequently achieving what is known as the Moiré effect. Nagler says that Pitteri “[produced] a significant number of prints in this strange manner which were received with great applause and subsequently copied”. The present sensitively observed and masterfully treated profile portrait of a young woman with her head resting nonchalantly on her left hand also demonstrates this very interesting effect. Seen from a distance the picture almost seems to flicker and, in doing so, also produces a charming chiaroscuro effect. The woman portrayed is in all probability Rosa, Giovanni Battista Piazzetta’s wife, whose portrait occurs again and again in the master’s oeuvre.
A superb, sharp impression, printed with a delicate veil of tone, with wide margins. Literature: Maria Agnese Chiari Moretto Wiel (ed.), L’eredità di Piazzetta: volti e figure nell’incisione del Settecento, exh. cat. Venice, Palazzo Ducale, Venice 1996, p. 75, no. 143.Contact us for further information