Edward Lear (1812-1888)
"Bagnara" (Calabria, Southern Italy)
Lithograph drawn by the artist
Printed by Hullmandel & Walton
Published by Richard Bentley
Dimensions: 13.7 cm x 20.5 cm (32.5 cm x 49.2 cm (Framed))
Numbered "Plate 13" top left and lettered with the title beneath the image and "Edward Lear, del & lith."; "Printed by Hullmandel & Walton"; "London; Richard Bentley, New Burlington Street, August, 1852". The image appeared in Edward Lear's "Journals of a Landscape Painter in Calabria" 1st edition, London: Richard Bentley, 1852.
Lear visited Bagnara on 26 August 1847. His trip is written up in his journals published in 1852. He writes:
"On the north side of the rock of Bagnara we landed, glad once again to welcome our old friends the aloes and cactus, which ever love to adorn the rocky coast or beetling crag... Bagnara rises from the water's edge in an amphitheatre of buildings crowned by a high rock which is joined to the mountain above by a castle and aqueduct, and is assuredly one of the most imposing and stately towns in appearance which we have yet seen. The arches of the aqueduct span a chasm in the rock-peninsula on which it stands, and while a castle adorns the seaward portion, the land-cliffs are studded with a glittering row of buildings, many of which nestle down to the very shore below the torn and cracked ravines into which the precipices are shivered. A smooth half-moon of sand extends at the foot of the rocks, and gives a calm and pleasant air to the whole picture."
All the above elements of Lear's description are incorporated into his highly accomplished lithographic print of the subject. The "aloes and cactus" are particularly distinctive and well observed in the foreground.
 p.173-175, Edward Lear's "Journals of a Landscape Painter in Calabria" 1st edition, London: Richard Bentley, 1852
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