Architectural Capriccio, Canaletto (Giovanni Antonio Canal)
Pen and brown ink, with gray wash, over graphite and traces of black chalk, 11 1/4 x 8 1/16 inches (286 x 204 mm)
Wow, I just love drawings like this — simultaneously loose and gestural and pinned to geometrically solid draftsmanship. What a brilliant use of warm brown ink for the lines, giving the open facades a feeling of sunlit warmth, contrasted with the cool gray wash for the shadows — a lesson in warm and cool in the simplified context of a wash drawing instead of a more complex painting.
I also love the lively, sketchy, wavering lines he’s used for the horizontals and verticals, eliminating any suggestion of stiffness.
What a treat to view drawings like this in high resolution.
Original is in the Morgan Library and Museum, and is currently on display as part of the exhibition Tiepolo, Guardi and their World. Click on “Zoom+” and use fullscreen and zoom controls below the image.