Sublime Ideas: Drawings by Giovanni Battista Piranesi
The Morgan Library & Museum & Paul Holberton Publishing, 2023
In a letter written near the end of his life, Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720–78) explained that he left his native Venice because no patrons were willing to support “the sublimity of [his] ideas.” Residing in Rome, he became internationally famous as a printmaker and designer, among other numerous pursuits. While Piranesi’s notoriety stems from his etchings, he was also an accomplished draftsman who first developed much of his work in drawings.
Sublime Ideas is the most comprehensive, updated study of Piranesi’s drawings with over two hundred illustrations offering insight into his life and creative endeavors. Coinciding with the Morgan’s Spring 2023 exhibition, Sublime Ideas diligently surveys the artist’s enduring work as an artistic force.