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Franz Weirotter (1730-1771), Suite of 12 Views of Italy, etchings, 1759 [most signed in the plate by Weirotter]. Reference: Nagel 5. 10 printed in pairs on one sheet; one on a smaller sheet (still with margins), and the larger frontispiece on a single sheet. In generally good condition, browning toward the outer edge of the sheets, some other defects affecting outer edges but not the images. Each of the paired compositions about 6 1/2 x 8 1/4 inches on sheets 16 3/4 x 10 3/8; the frontispiece 7 1/4 x 10 5/8 on a sheet 16 3/4 x 10 3/8 inches. All on laid paper, most with a Bunch of Grapes watermark.
Very good/fine impressions; the impression of Viterbo possibly a proof before the signature (and printed with some ink/soiling); the rest with the Weirotter signature clearly printed.
Although these views were made in Rome or its outskirts, Tivoli, Viterbo, etc., they are not generally of well-known monuments or vistas but rather portraits of the Italian countryside, often depicting relatively modest structures with nearby ruins, and generally with people busily engaged in fishing, talking, preparing food, or otherwise engaged.
Weirotter was one of the most distinguished of the German 18th Century landscape etchers. Although many of these printmakers specialized in reproducing the work of others, Weirotter tended to create original compositions for his prints. The 12 plates in this set are original Wierotter compositions, although they are remindful of the work of 17th Century Dutch artists such as Jan van Goyen, Pieter Molyn, or Jacob van Ruisdael. Hind noted of Weirotter that he was “most successful when he keeps to plates of the small dimensions, to which his delicate and clearly etched line is fitted.”