Thomas Jones An Excavation of an Antique Building in a Cava in the Villa Negroni, Rome ?1777, later dated 1779

Artwork details

Artist
Thomas Jones 1742–1803
Title
An Excavation of an Antique Building in a Cava in the Villa Negroni, Rome
Date ?1777, later dated 1779
Medium Oil paint and chalk on paper
Dimensions Support: 406 x 552 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Presented by Canon J.H. Adams 1983
Reference
T03544
Not on display

Display caption

Jones visited the excavations in the grounds of the Villa Negroni in July 1777, which had begun the previous month. He described the frescoes they discovered in the ancient domestic dwelling, as ‘painted Ornaments much in the Chinese taste’. At that time there was relatively little respect for the historical importance and context of such classical paintings, and Jones’s companion, the artist turned art dealer, Henry Tresham, purchased them for the Earl of Bristol. This oil sketch shows the site of the excavation in the foreground, with the convent of San Eusebio above and to the left.

April 2007

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