Piranesi Drawings: Visions of Antiquity
The British Museum & Thames & Hudson, 2020
The Venetian-born artist Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720-1778) is best known for his dramatic etchings of the architecture and antiquities of his adopted city, Rome, and for his extraordinary flights of spatial fancy, such as Le Carceri (‘Prisons’).
Published to coincide with an exhibition at the British Museum, this original volume explores Piranesi’s skill as a draughtsman. While many studies focus on Piranesi’s activities as a printmaker, this beautifully illustrated book examines the many unanswered questions about his drawings. It will establish a clear relationship between his drawings and his prints, discuss the involvement of studio hands in his late works, and examine how his style as a draughtsman evolved. Piranesi: Visions of Antiquity reveals the quality and impact of the pen and chalk studies of a remarkably talented artist, as shown by the British Museum’s superb collection.