Piranesi’s connections with members of the French Academy are extensive. He contributed 48 small views to the popular illustrated guidebook Varie vedute di Roma Antica e Moderna Disegnate e Intagliate da Celebri Autori (1745), which involved many well-known artists of the French Academy including Jérôme-Charles Bellicard (1726-1786) and Jean-Laurent Legeay (1708-1786). He also called upon Jean Barbault (1718-1762) for his expertise in figural engraving in the third volume of the Antichità Romane, and Charles Michel Ange Challe (1718-1778) is said to have provided the French text of the Diverse Maniere d’Adornare I Cammini and Ville de Pesto. Painter Hubert Robert (1733-1808), who often accompanied Piranesi on excursions and excavations, adopted Piranesi’s combination of architectural fantasy and archaeology in his large and sweeping views of ruins. These connections provide insight into the collaborative nature of Piranesi’s work, his reception in France among collectors and French artists, and the ways Academic culture shaped Piranesi’s career and artistic practice.
To see this image in the Vedute di Roma, vol 16 of Piranesi’s Opere, click here.