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Arts of Europe

The MFAH collections of art created on the European continent encompass artistic styles across the time line of history, from the ancient world to the Middle Ages, and the Early Modern era to the 21st century.

English, 1734 - 1797
Italian Landscape with Mountains and a River
c. 1790
Oil on canvas

20 ½ x 30 ½ inches

Sarah Campbell Blaffer Foundation, Houston
Arts of Europe

Perhaps to enhance his reputation, Joseph Wright journeyed to Rome, where from 1773 to 1775 he studied antique sculpture and Renaissance painting. After his return to England he continued to paint candlelit subjects, for which he was most famous, as well as portraits, history paintings, and landscapes, including scenes from Italy.

Wright of Derby’s mature landscapes demonstrate his romantic vision of nature and his interest in the effects of light. In this Italian scene, the golden evening sun illuminates the trees and mountainside, while a deep shadow envelops the foreground at right.