In my Gondola, 1894

I min gondol

In my Gondola


Oil on canvas

In the fall of 1894, Emma and Anders Zorn traveled to Venice, invited by an American art collector, Isabella Stewart Gardner, and her husband John. While the Zorns stayed in their grand palace next to Canal Grande, a couple of gondoliers were placed at their service. Emma was quite charmed by one of them. Zorn writes, “My wife asked to sit with me in the gondola, just to see his back and neck. To my shame I must admit that I only painted him from the back, just what I saw as he rowed.” The artist captures the colors, light and fresh breeze across the lagoon in what became one of his most impressionistic works. The painting is supposed to look like a snapshot but is deliberately composed by Zorn.