Image courtesy Clark Art Institute. | Licence: Public Domain
Image courtesy Clark Art Institute. | Licence: Public Domain

The Rialto, Venice

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From the Collection


In April 1826, Bonington embarked on a tour of northern Italy. For an artist who had already unlocked a fresh conception of luminosity and atmosphere in the watercolor medium, Venice’s fabled light must have been a revelation. The streaks of blue sky carry more gestural verve than in the earlier watercolors made along the English Channel, while dense green pigment (applied to details of costume and market produce) gives a literal meaning to “local color.” The slightly elevated perspective allows an architecturally dense view of the famed stone-arch Rialto Bridge spanning the Grand Canal, while still keeping the focus on the strolling figures.

Descriptive medium

Watercolor and gouache, with gum arabic, on cream wove paper

Image Licence

Image Credit

Image courtesy Clark Art Institute.

From the Watercolour World


The Rialto, Venice, Italy