Offered together here as a pair, are two watercolors in vertical format, 6 3/4" by 3 5/8" inside the mat, (11 5/8" by 8" as framed), each signed at lower right by the noted Italian watercolorist artist UMBERTO ONGANIA. Ongania's works are almost instantly recognizable by virtue of their detail, handling of light, and technical excellence. He was a consistent artist, and worked exclusively or nearly exclusively in watercolor, providing portable souvenirs for 19th century travelers making the Grand Tour of Europe. Surprisingly there does not appear to be any biographical information readily available; I do see a birth date given as "1800" but don't have a lot of confidence in that; I think I saw a painting dated 1887 (he seems to have rarely dated his work) so that would indicate he was working at least into the late century. Ongania's works have been widely disseminated geographically and they sell at auction around the world. This pair is in very good condition overall; the St. Mark's tower image has light foxing in the sky as shown, but it's not obtrusive. One image features the famous Bridge of Sighs over a canal, the other a scene of the famous St. Mark's tower area. On the reverse of one is an old framer's sticker from Curry's Art Stores in downtown Toronto, giving some hint as to the path these took from Venice to Southern California. .
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