Catalog Archive
Auction 132, Lot 559

"Vue de la Cathedrale de Milan", Basset, Paul-Andre le jeune

Subject: Milan, Italy

Period: 1805 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

16 x 10.5 inches
40.6 x 26.7 cm

Optical prints (or vue d’optique) were made to be viewed in a special apparatus that provided the viewer with an illusion of depth (early 3-D). The large mirror employed in the viewing machine showed the image reversed so many of these views have the titles and information engraved forward and backwards to facilitate viewing in the machine or by hand. These prints were only produced for a short period of time (1740 to 1790) and then were replaced with the invention of the smaller steroviewer. These views are some of the most distinctive and interesting images of the eighteenth century, and their distinctive engraving style, striking perspective and bright original color makes them as visually delightful as they are historically fascinating.

This is a fine view of the magnificent, gothic Milan Cathedral. The Madonnina's spire, erected in 1762, is prominently depicted. This prospect view was published by Basset who was a well-known publisher of optical prints, established in rue St Jacques in Paris.


Condition: B+

Nice impression and original color with a few minor stains.

Estimate: $110 - $150

Sold for: $80

Closed on 6/2/2010