Copper engraving with original body colour. Vue d'optique.
Full title: Vue de grand Arsenal a Venise qui a deux portes, l'une pour recevoir les ouvriers, l'autre pour faire entrer les Vaisseaux.
Published: "A Paris chez J. Chereau rue St Jacques au dessous de la Fontaine St Severin aux 2 Colonnes No 267". No date, circa 1750+
Sheet size: 12 x 17" - 305 x 432mm. Plate size: 11 5/8 x 16 5/8" - 295 x 422mm.
In generally good condition with only one minor blemish (a small scuff) at top left in the sky of the image. Attached (pasted) at edges to card support. The number, 58 at top right. The mirrored title, 'L'ARSENAL A VENISE' in the centre of the top margin.
The vue d'optique or vue perspective were popular during the second half of the 18th and early 19th centuries. They were designed to be viewed through a 'zograscope' in order to give an illusion of depth, though this is not an essential.
The image shows the gates of the Arsenal guarded by winged lions, the masts of shipping behind its walls and a number of characters in the foreground. It is selectively coloured, again to emphasise the depth of field.