Pietro Longhi Antique Venetian Colombina Painting (Attr.)


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There are a series of four vertical paintings that create a splendid set of late 18th century paintings attributed to Pietro Longhi. The frame has been restored, varnished and repositioned, making the painting suitable for even the most sparse, but art-loving environments.
The painting depicts the mask of Colombina, who cleans the floor with a broom made of straw and wood. The woman is depicted in a wide yellow dress with a pompous skirt and chiffon flounced sleeves. The neckline is very deep, allowing a glimpse of part of her breasts, also swollen by the bodice worn, typical of the period.
She can be distinguished from a servant girl because she is adorned with gold jewellery, both on her wrist and around her neck. She has two earrings that act as a very elegant spotlight. Her neck is slightly reclined as if she wanted to portray herself. The technique is a very hasty but precise oil painting on canvas, in fact there are not many details, but remaining in Longhi’s style, it is very essential.
A piece of art from 18th century Venice, a must-have piece.
Pietro Longhi portrayed events in the daily life of the Venetian aristocracy contemporary to him in a very realistic manner. His canvases depict typical moments of the Venetian world.
In his paintings we find the same atmosphere as in Goldoni’s comedies, the settings are discreet, in private and intimate contexts. Goldoni himself, a contemporary of Pietro Longhi, admired his work and dedicated a sonnet to him in which he indicated Longhi’s work as a pictorial version of his theatre. With Goldoni, we are in the midst of the 16th century, in the middle of the Venice Carnival, amid masks, music, laughter and haggling merchants. In the darkness of the calli we meet a figure dressed in red wrapped in a black cloak: it is Pantalone, the Venetian mask symbol of the commedia dell’arte made famous throughout Europe by Carlo Goldoni. The masks of the commedia dell’arte parade through the canals of Venice: from Harlequin, the foolish ‘Servant of two masters’, to Columbine and the cunning Brighella, the enterprising and opportunistic face of the bourgeoisie.
The cross-section of eighteenth-century life that Pietro Longhi’s paintings offer us represents a precious testimony of customs thanks to which it is possible to reconstruct Venetian daily habits in detail.
By highlighting a detail, such as a gesture, he tries to evoke the essence of a situation.


Height: 170 cm (66.92 in.)

Width: 76,5 cm (30.11 in.)

Depth: 4 cm (1.57 in.)


The painting is in very good and original vintage condition, slight scratches and light wear consistent with its time and use. Being a VINTAGE item it is possible that it will bear some scratches or defects.

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