Johann Georg von Dillis
Grottaferrata near Rome, um 1796/97
Öl auf Eichenholz, 33,4 x 45,4 cm
1841 durch König Ludwig I. aus der Sammlung Klenze erworben
Inv. Nr. WAF 211
Grottaferrata near Rome
The focal point of this depiction is the early mediaeval monastery Grottaferrata, which lies northwest of Lake Alban. The Alban Hills extend along the background, which are characterized by the significant conical peak of Monte Cavo. A river with a little fall flows in the center, while the view is restricted in the foreground by trees on both sides. The painting is bathed in a hazy atmosphere, which, along with the unusual oval format, harks back to the influence of Claude Lorrain. This type of depiction is not typical of Dillis but is representative of contemporary landscape description of the Alban Hills. During his first stay in Italy during 1794/95, Dillis repeatedly painted Grottaferrata. An extensive range of drawings and two watercolors have been identified as precursors to the oil painting. The works make clear that Dillis, in the completed version, gave precedence to compositional considerations over topographical reality, adding the river and the foreground as idealizing elements.