Sargent's interest in the beautiful pavement of Italy is really quite fascinating. Although this particular watercolor is not dated (by the source I had) he was in Sicily to see the Cathedral in Palermo (according to Olson) in 1897. The following year (1898) when he went to Venice, he painted the remarkable work titled "The Pavement" at the Basilica San Marco.
All of this really begs the question
of the most peculiar recent sale of an oil I call: "Venetian
Interior Pavement". Could this be one of these paintings of this
period when John was so interested in the mosaic floors? And what got him
so fascinated with this subject matter?
Sold Christie's; 3/14/91; Lot 70;
By: Natasha Wallace
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