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Constantinople's Harbour from Koum Kapou.
mid XIX c. - Watercolour and gouche on paper, 57 x 37 cm, signed and dated by the artist in lower left hand corner, framed and glazed, overall dimensions 86 x 69 cm. A most striking view of the harbour taken from the European side. In fine fresh condition. The artist depicts a typical small Turkish rowing boat in the foreground. To the right we see various small sailing craft in front of which seagulls swoop for a meal. In the background are some of the great landmarks of Constantinople, above all the Blue Mosque. It was built between 1609 and 1616, to the designs of the royal architect Sedefhar Mehmet Aa, who was a pupil and senior assistant of the famous architect Mimar Sinan. It is the only mosque in Istanbul with six minarets, and its impressive size and memorable interior explain why Preziosi was drawn to record it. Koum Kapou was well known as an Armenian quarter in the nineteenth century. A native of Malta, Preziosi (1816-1882), first visited Istanbul in 1842, and depicting the city and its people in their distinctive costumes and attitudes was to be the focus for his artistic career thereafter. In the 1850s he worked for the Illustrated London News, Preziosi was invited in 1866 to paint the official portrait of the Ottoman Sultan Abdülaziz for the Turkish Pavilion of the 1867 Universal Exhibition in Paris. During his time in Constantinople which he made his home, Preziosi was the most popular painter in the city. [Attributes: Signed Copy]
      [Bookseller: Shapero Rare Books]
Last Found On: 2015-06-23           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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