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Luca Carlevariis

Photo: Paul Macapia

Luca Carlevariis

Italian, Venice, 1663-1729

Luca Carlevariis (also spelled Carlevaris or Carlevarijs) was born in Udine, Italy in 1663. Carlevariis' father was also an artist but, by the time Luca was seven years old, he was an orphan. In 1679, Carlevariis moved to Venice, where he would become the pioneer of Venetian view (veduta) painting.

One of Carlevariis' chief influences may have been the artist Gaspar Van Wittel (known as Vanvitelli), who Carlevariis may have met in Rome between 1685 and 1690 and again in northern Italy during the 1690s. Carlevariis was also influenced by the Dutch and Flemish paintings he saw in Venetian art collections.

In 1703, Carlevariis published a collection of 104 etchings of Venetian scenes based on his own paintings titled Le fabriche e vedute di Venezia designate, poste in prospettiva, et itagliate da Luca Carlevariis. Experiencing a rise in popularity, in 1704, Carlevariis' first commissioned painting is recorded. In 1708, he entered the Venetian painters guild.

Supported in Venice by the wealthy Zenobio family, Carlevariis became popular among Venetian patrons, especially those of the aristocracy. His scenes of Venice served as a welcome antidote to the low morale that plagued Venetians as a result of the late-seventeenth century series of wars between the Republic of Venice and the Ottoman Empire. Carlevariis' works were also popular among tourists, particularly among British patrons visiting Venice on their Grand Tours.

During the later years of his life, Carlevariis would rise in prominence as a painter, architectural supervisor, and mathematician. His last major work, painted in 1727, was Cesareo Conte di Colloredo Entering the Doge's Palace, an account of the Imperial Ambassador's trip to Venice. A year later, Carlevariis was stricken with paralysis and died in 1730 in Venice. Carlevariis' style and popularity would go on to influence other painters like Canaletto, Michele Marieschi, and Francesco Guardi, who would also become famous for their paintings of Venetian scenes.

  • painting
  • Italian
  • Venice, Italy

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