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Jasper Francis Cropsey
The Coast of Genoa
1854
oil
48 1/8 x 72 1/2 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Aileen B. Train, Helen B. Spaulding and Julia B. Key



Dramatic flowing clouds and choppy water suggest Genoa's wind-swept coast. The medieval tower, or “lanterna,” is at right, but the remaining scene is most likely a fantasy. This ambitious seascape, painted in Cropsey's New York studio, appealed to mid-century interest in Italy. Visits to Italy provided tourists and artists an opportunity to return to America with a deeper, richer sense of artistic tradition.