On the Balcony, Venice

Richard Parkes Bonington, 1826 - 1836 possibly

LL 3932

About this object

'On the Balcony, Venice' was previously attributed to Richard Parkes Bonington. However, the art historian Patrick Noon suggested in 2006 that it is instead a copy of an untraced oil painting that was part of Bonington's studio sale in 1829 after his death. The oil painting was reproduced in mezzotint by H Quilley (active 1834 - 1835) and also appears in John Frederick Lewis's (1805 - 1876) watercolour 'An Interior' (Tate). There is a version of this watercolour by Bonington in Glasgow Museum and Art Gallery which differs only slightly in colouring, costume and pose to the Lady Lever copy.

The costume in this watercolour cannot be assigned to a specific date but the short pleated gown and slashed sleeves of the figure on the right were popular in the 1530s and 1540s. Bonington spent a lot of time in Venice in 1826 and was influenced by the Venetian Renaissance paintings he saw there, particularly their elaborate colouring and expressive technique.

Object specifics

  • Artist(s)
    Copied after Richard Parkes Bonington (British: English, born:1802-10-25, died:1828-09-23)
  • Date
    1826 - 1836 possibly
  • Materials
    Watercolour; Gouache; Scratching out; Paper
  • Measurements
    18.8 cm x 13.7 cm
  • Physical description
    A view depicting three figures, a woman and two men wearing 16th century clothing on a balcony in Venice. A red curtain hangs behind them with a view of Venice and the Campanile of St Mark's in the distance.
  • Related people
    Richard Parkes Bonington (Artist/maker) ; Gooden and Fox (Previous owner) ; John Postle Heseltine (Previous owner) ; William Hesketh Lever (Previous owner)
  • Other number(s)
    Accession Number: LL 3932
  • Credit line
    Purchased by William Hesketh Lever in 1920
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Collection
    From the Lady Lever Art Gallery collections

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  • British Watercolours and Drawings: Lord Leverhulme's Collection in the Lady Lever Art Gallery

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    Author: Jessica Feather
    Publisher: Liverpool University Press & National Museums Liverpool
    Date: 2010
    Description: Lord Leverhulme's Collection catalogue of Watercolours and Drawings in the Lady Lever Art Gallery


Previous owners

  • William Hesketh Lever

    Owned from: 1920
    How acquired: Purchased from Gooden and Fox in March 1920
    Owned until: Unknown or unrecorded
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
  • Gooden and Fox

    Owned from: 1920
    How acquired: Purchased for William Hesketh Lever from Sotheby's on 25 March 1920, lot 96
    Owned until: Unknown or unrecorded
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
  • John Postle Heseltine

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1920
    Disposal method: Sold at Sotheby's on 25 March 1920, lot 96
Object view = Fine Art
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