Vesuvius at Dusk, 1872

by William Stanley Haseltine (1835–1900)

Oil on canvas
23 x 17 inches
Initialed and dated lower left: W.S.H. ‘72

Read more about William Stanley Haseltine

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Provenance
Louisa Morgan Satterlee, Greenwich, Connecticut
Estate of Louisa Morgan Satterlee
Private collection, Greenwich, Connecticut
Sale, Christie’s, New York, New York, June 3, 1983, lot 99, from above
Private collection, New York
Sale, Sotheby’s, New York, New York, March 15, 1986, lot 135, from above
Private collection, Florida, acquired from above
Sale, Christie’s Online, May 15–22, 2019, lot 184, from above

 

Related Works
Drawing, Study of Mt. Vesuvius from Sorrento, Italy, 1858, brush and wash, graphite on paper, 18 1/16 x 23 9/16 inches, inscribed lower left: Vesuvius from Sorrento / Eruption of June 58 Evening; Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, New York, New York
The Bay of Naples, ca. 1858, oil on canvas, 30½ x 25½ inches, inscribed lower left: W.S.HASELTINE; Figge Art Museum, Davenport, Iowa

 

Note: Haseltine was enamored with Italy and eventually settled in Rome, where he joined the international art colony in 1867. Following the European pictorial tradition of the prior centuries, some of his paintings envision classical Italian landscapes and themes. This work, as well as that in the collection of the Figge Art Museum, is based in part on a drawing at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, of the June 1858 eruption of Vesuvius. This perspective is probably from the northern end of the Bay of Naples, near Posillipo, Italy.

Artist Biography

William Stanley Haseltine was one of the nineteenth century’s most celebrated expatriates, whose Italian landscapes introduced American audiences to the romance, history, and beauty of the ancient landscape. Born in Philadelphia, Haseltine descended from a rich artistic history of his own: his mother Elizabeth was an amateur painter, his older brother James became a prominent sculptor, and his younger brother Charles established the Haseltine Art Galleries in Philadelphia. William was the most promising artistic talent, and he pursued his studies at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University before returning to Philadelphia to train under the German artist Paul Weber.

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William Stanley Haseltine was one of the nineteenth century’s most celebrated expatriates, whose Italian landscapes introduced American audiences to the romance, history, and beauty of the ancient landscape. Born in Philadelphia, Haseltine descended from a rich artistic history of his own: his mother Elizabeth was an amateur painter, his older brother James became a prominent sculptor, and his younger brother Charles established the Haseltine Art Galleries in Philadelphia. William was the most promising artistic talent, and he pursued his studies at the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University before returning to Philadelphia to train under the German artist Paul Weber. He accompanied Weber to Dusseldorf soon after, remaining in the artist’s colony from 1854-1858. There, Haseltine honed his painterly technique and began to explore the European continent. He traveled to Italy in 1856, accompanying Albert Bierstadt, Emanuel Leutze, and Worthington Whittredge on a sketching trip from the Rhine to the Roman Campagna.

Back in the United States, Hasletine joined Bierstadt, Leutze, and Whittredge in New York’s Tenth Street Studio Building, the center of the Hudson River School and the American art world. He didn’t stay long. Haseltine returned to Europe in 1866, spending three years in Paris before settling permanently in Rome. His romantic evocations of Italy’s historic ruins and peaceful coasts drew patrons from there and abroad. Distinguished by their rich colors and precisely-rendered forms, Haseltine’s Italian scenes combine sentiment and strength—emotion filtered through a steady gaze.

Haseltine continued to exhibit his work at the Paris Salon, the National Academy of Design, the Brooklyn Art Association, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts until just before the turn of the century. Today, his paintings are featured in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, the San Diego Museum of Art, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

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