Paris 1815 - 1891
Ponte Nomentano, Rome
Oil on canvas
74 × 100 cm. (29 × 39 ¼ in.)
FRAMED DIMENSIONS:96.5 x 122 cm. (38 x 48 in.)
FURTHER INFORMATION:This outstanding landscape in the Roman Campagna now overtaken by the urban sprawl of Rome shows Benouville at his best, for his considerable abilities had won him the Prix de Rome for Historic Landscape in 1845.
By 1852 Benouville had established himself as a permanent resident in Rome. He had met Corot there in 1843 and loaned him the use of his own studio, the fruit of this friendship being perhaps evident in the group of landscapes that Benouville painted leading up his entry for the competition in 1845. Achille's brother Léon won the Premier Grand Prix de Rome in the same year, an extraordinary feat for the brothers. Achille then spent the next twenty-five years in Italy, only returning permanently to France in 1870.
Achille had studied under F.E. Picot, best known for his figure paintings, although his talent for landscape is shown in the sketches made during his time in Rome as the winner of the second Premier Grand Prix de Rome in 1813. He had first exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1834, entering the contest for the Prix de Rome in 1837 and being awarded the second prize. He continued to paint in the vicinity of Paris and elsewhere in France, until leaving for Italy in 1843.
Thereafter Benouville continued to paint both real and composed landscapes with mythological or historical incident. These works were not only acquired by private patrons but also by the French state for the Louvre and other museums outside Paris. He exhibited at the Salon up to 1890.