CODAZZI, Viviano
(b. 1604, Bergamo, d. 1670, Roma)

Rome, the Campo Vaccino Looking toward the Capitoline

c. 1630
Oil on canvas, 72 x 95,5 cm
Galleria dell'Accademia di San Luca, Rome

The painting shows a view of the Campo Vaccino, as the Roman Forum was called in the 17th century, with the Capitoline Hill in the background. The church of Santa Maria Liberatrice, with its simple façade dating from 1617, dominates the left foreground. The church was demolished in 1899 to make way for archeological excavations. To the right stands what is to this day one of the Forum's principal sights, the three remaining columns of the Temple of Castor and Pollux, joined by the vestiges of the architrave.

This painting can be considered an important link in the development of 18th-century Venetian "veduta". The pronounced geometric forms of the side wall of Santa Maria Liberatrice, its placement parallel to the image surface, the use of shadows to unite and arrange the composition - all of these devices were commonly employed by Canaletto in his early works, and by Bellotto. Codazzi was one of the first Italian artists to adopt architectural perspective systematically in vedute. In this respect as well, this painting foreshadows the art of Carlevaris, Canaletto and Bellotto.

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