Washerwomen in the Ruins of the Colosseum
On View: Beaux-Arts Court, South, 3rd Floor
In this painting, Hubert Robert combined real and imagined architecture: the recognizable pierced walls of Rome’s Colosseum looming over the coffered arches of another decaying structure. A group of washerwomen and other figures gather around a fire, providing a picturesque contrast between ordinary lives of the present day and the lost grandeur of antiquity.
In 1754 Robert had traveled to Italy to further his artistic training and soon found himself captivated by the crumbling ruins of ancient monuments. During his eleven-year stay in Italy, Robert assembled a vast “catalogue” of drawings of such sites, which he would later include in historically evocative fantasy scenes that earned him both patronage and acclaim.
Oil on canvas
17 3/4 x 22 3/4 in. (45.1 x 57.8 cm)
Frame: 23 1/4 x 28 in. (59.1 x 71.1 cm) (show scale)
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Hubert Robert (French, 1733-1808). Washerwomen in the Ruins of the Colosseum, ca. 1760s. Oil on canvas, 17 3/4 x 22 3/4 in. (45.1 x 57.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Anonymous gift, 1994.70 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1994.70_SL1.jpg)
overall, 1994.70_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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