Enchantments and discoveries

East and west meet in the paintings of some of the greatest Italian painters (and travellers!) of the late eighteenth century, who, left their impressions on canvas of what were then largely unexplored places in the Middle-east.

From March to 21 June 2011, the Art Gallery “Giuseppe De Nittis” in Palazzo Marra in Barletta, will put on the colours of the Orient with the exhibition “Enchantments and discoveries. The Orient in Eighteenth century Italian Paintings”. These “pictorial writings” are divided into four “chapters”: Beyond the Adriatic, Landscapes, Cities and rendezvous, Dreaming female concubines.  Each “chapter” has the aim of capturing in art the impressions of far away lands and cultures. By casting their gaze towards the unknown, towards those atmospheres and narratives inspired by the East, these eighteenth century artists, also known as “orientalists”, introduced into European painting for the first time that singular fascination for the exotic which they experienced fully through a romantic sensibility.
The exhibition includes the paintings of the Venetian Francesco Hayez (the first of the so-called travellers!), Caffi, Biseo, Marinelli and Piccini.