Carlo Bonavia’s Grand Tour

So far, a total of forty-one paintings, dating back to the years between 1755 and 1788, have been attributed to Carlo Bonavia, active in Naples in the 18th century. The artist – praised by the 19th-century art critic Pietro Zani as “a great painter of history” and “of landscapes” – portrayed views of the coast and countryside near Naples, some non-indentified ruins, monuments in Pozzuoli and Baia, as well as a series of “capricci” or “imagined views”, in which he placed real historic monuments within imaginary settings.

Bonavia’s canvasses, clearly influenced by the Neapolitan Salvator Rosa and by the French Joseph Vernet, are visions and glimpses of the Grand Tour.

December 13, 2013