The Evolution of His Venetian Works

A.F. Bunner, Unknown Venice.

A.F. Bunner, Unknown Venice.

Andrew Fisher Bunner’s works of Venice are a combination of the best works of J.M.W Turner and the works of James Whistler, a style unique to America.

A.F. Bunner’s early works of Venice

Thomas Doughty, In the Catskills, 1836, oil on canvas, Addison Gallery of American Art.

Thomas Doughty, In the Catskills, 1836, oil on canvas, Addison Gallery of American Art.

are shaped by the Hudson River School, the Dutch marine landscape tradition, and J.M.W Turner; a British artist who lived in the early part of the 19th century. His works have a landscape like quality and he works in the horizontal format favored by the Hudson River School. The Dutch marine landscape tradition is present in A.F. Bunner’s works through the great detail of the ships as well as having one of the boats the center focus of the work [compare A.F. Bunner’s Venice works with Aelbert Cuyp’s Hafen Von Dordrecht. A.F. Bunner’s works, like this unknown Venetian scene and his View of Venice, share the same light and airy qualities of J.M.W. Turner’s works, like his View from the Porch of Madonna della Salute. The work shares a similar smoky bright quality, as well as being a scene of a popular tourist sight in Venice. Andrew Fisher

Aelbert Cuyp, Hafen Von Dordrecht, 1660.

Aelbert Cuyp, Hafen Von Dordrecht, 1660.

Bunner’s early works of Venice are influence by the Hudson River School, the Dutch marine landscape tradition, and J.M.W. Turner.

The works A.F. Bunner creates from the time he was living in Venice take on more features of James Whistler. James Whistlers works of Venice are of the gritty unromantic Venice. As opposed to Turner, who places Venice on a pedestal to be admired, Whistler knocks Venice down from the pedestal and portrays her darker secrets. Whistler’s Venice shows the city with problems like prostitution, poverty, and disrepair. His Venice is the everyday Venetian native Venice, not the much visited tourist attraction. A.F. Bunner takes this everyday Venice

J.M.W Turner. View From the Porch of Madonna della Salute. 1835. Oil on Canvas. 36 x 48 in.

J.M.W Turner. View From the Porch of Madonna della Salute. 1835. Oil on Canvas. 36 x 48 in.

that Whistler portrays and makes it more palatable. His paintings, like Rio Della Calcina, still contain the light airy quality of Turner’s works, but instead of the grand tourist attraction of Venice, A.F. Bunner shows the every day and the inner Venice. A.F. Bunner’s later works of Venice, after he spent time living in the city, are a combination of the best of J.M.W. Turner and the best of James Whistler.

The works of Venice that A.F. Bunner creates are a style unique to the American market. Instead of the British, who see Venice up on a pedestal or down in the dirt, Americans were able to have scenes that show the beautiful city and the everyday people. Perhaps Americans were more able to view Venice as a living breathing city. Venice was the goal of Americans and instead of showing a dead city with no people, Americans wanted to see the A.F. Bunner, Rio e Campanile San Martino, Venice. 1883. Ink on paper. 13 x 9 in.

James Whistler, The Two Doorways, 1879-1880, etchings.

James Whistler, The Two Doorways, 1879-1880, etchings.

city thriving. The British, on the other hand, valued the Venice of yesteryears and wanted to see works that glorified Venice pasts, like Turner’s, or showed how fall the city had fallen from its glory days, like Whistler’s. A.F. Bunner’s works of Venice show a style uniquely American, from his influence of the Hudson River School to his ability to show a city in a realistic, albeit beautiful, light.

Andrew Fisher Bunner’s works of Venice are a combination of the best of J.M.W. Turner’s works and the best of James Whistler’s works and showcase an attitude towards Venice that is unique to Americans.

Back to the Beginning

A.F. Bunner, Rio Della Calcina.

A.F. Bunner, Rio Della Calcina.

James Whistler, A Canal in Venice, 1880, pastels on brown paper, 11x8in. Corcoran Art Gallery, Washington DC.

James Whistler, A Canal in Venice, 1880, pastels on brown paper, 11x8in. Corcoran Art Gallery, Washington DC.

Responses

[…] Another gorgeous type was Art Nouveau that ran from the late 1800’s to the early 1900’s. The designs were incredibly varied and quite often risky for the era, using concepts from nature like leaves, sea creatures, animals and sometimes much nudes which became a well loved design. More information: เสื้อผ้าสุนัข […]

I have a print signed A.F. BUNNER in pencil. It shows a hay wagon crossing a river. I cannot find any information on this print; can you help me ? In the bottom margin is a farmer raking a pile of hay with a wooden hay rake.

Thank you

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