A very rare sepia aquatint of Villefranche.. France.

Attractive view of the popular French Riviera resort and town of Villefranche-sur-Mer by Albanis Beaumont (1753-1810). Printed by T. Bensley, and published for William Faden in London. Beaumont was born in Piedmont, but naturalised in England. This print is from a scarce book of Travels through The Maritime Alps from Italy to Lyons, across the Col de Tende by way of Nice, Provence.

This is a superb quality aquatint ..rare in the the 1790's.

Mint condition

only other example I can find is a cleaned version at £1,000..

code : M3348

Cartographer : Albanis

Date : 1794

Size : 25*31 cms sheet 27.5*40.5 cms

availability : Available

Price : £495

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Sir Albanis Beaumont (ca. 1755–1812), draughtsman, aquatint engraver, and landscape painter, was born in Piedmont, but naturalised in England. Between the years 1787 and 1806 he published a great number of views in the south of France, in the Alps, and in Italy. The short account of him in Füssli's "Lexicon" (1806) is the best: 'Probably a Piedmontese, and the son of Claudio Francesco, he carried the sounding title of "Architecte pensionné de D. M. le roi de Sardaigne à la suite de S. A. R. le duc de Gloucester." In 1787 he exhibited a set of twelve views in Italy, mostly in the neighbourhood of Nice . . . and in 1788 yet other twelve views (mediocre enough) in the neighbourhood of Chamonny and the lake of Geneva, drawn and etched by himself. The value of these is due to the beautiful colouring added by Bernard Lory the elder. Soon after he betook himself and his landscape factory (Prospektfabrik) to London, and there associated himself with a certain Thomas Gowland as his partner, and Cornelius Apostool as engraver. In the last ten years of the eighteenth century this firm turned out a new series of views in Switzerland, France, and Savoy, which are about on a level with their precursors, but had not the advantage of Bernard Lory's tasteful brush. It must be acknowledged, however, that the clean firm lines of Apostool's needle add as much to this series as the other lost from the flaccid and insecure draughtsmanship of Beaumont.

A description of these plates and their prices (high at times) is found in Meusel's Museum'. He afterwards took to landscape painting, exhibiting in 1806 A Storm at Sea, in which the waves are said to have been drawn with great truth. A list of his works is in the new edition of Nagler, 1881, and a rather long account of him in the old, 1835.