The Lure of Italy and the Orient – Ippolito Caffi


Ippolito Caffi was an Italian painter famous for his landscapes and urban views. He was also an adventurer and a patriot.

Ippolito Caffi (Belluno 1809–1866 Lissa) was a representative and innovator of the veduta tradition. His admiration for Canaletto is apparent in the luminous and translucent quality of his early seascapes and architectural subjects. Caffi would go on to win acclaim for his mist-shrouded landscapes executed in an intense and romantic style. In Caffi’s hands, a nocturnal cityscape could be transformed into a theatrical stage where the main role was played not by the buildings but by a mysterious and dream-like glow of light.

The exhibition will take visitors on a journey through Venice, Rome, Naples, Athens, Constantinople and other cities of the Orient. Always determined to keep off the well-trodden path, Ippolito Caffi was an adventurer, who pursued far-flung destinations, even when it meant taking risks. His paintings, watercolours and drawings of Egypt, Syria and Jerusalem take us to places that were not part of the classic Grand Tour.

Caffi was also a fervent Italian patriot. He joined the Venetian revolt against Austria, losing his life in 1866 during the Battle of Lissa when the Re d’Italia ship sank in the Adriatic Sea.
Read more about Ippolito Caffi’s life(PDF) >>

This exhibition comprises 73 paintings and a selection of 15 watercolours and drawings from the Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia collection.

Ippolito Caffi, Main street of Cairo, 1844. Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia. Galleria Internazionale d’Arte Moderna di Ca’ Pesaro






Piranesi – Speaking Ruins


The great Italian graphic master Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720–78) did not originally plan to become a professional artist. He initially studied to be an architect before moving on to graphic art. Piranesi’s wide-ranging education, curious nature and powerful imagination, combined with his technical skill in graphics, led to unprecedented results. Piranesi created completely new visions of familiar sites in Rome – as well as a new way to depict landscapes.

Piranesi’s oeuvre includes more than 1,000 graphic works. His best-known graphic series are Vedute di Roma and Carceri d’invenzione. Both series are represented in this exhibition, which includes 16 graphic prints from the Sinebrychoff Art Museum’s collections.

In addition to graphic works, the exhibition features a video projection in which the Carceri d’invenzione series has been converted into a nearly tangible real-life space though 3D modelling technology. Watching the video has been described as ‘entering Piranesi’s mind’.

The exhibition opens in the Sinebrychoff Art Museum’s Red Cellar exhibition space on Friday 16 February 2018, remaining on display until 27 May 2018.

Piranesi, Giovanni Battista (1720–1778): View of the Piazza Rotonda in Rome.

Piranesi, Giovanni Battista (1720–1778): View of the Piazza Rotonda in Rome. Finnish National Gallery / Sinebrychoff Art Museum. Photo: Finnish National Gallery / Kirsi Halkola