On a well traveled path, the artist set his canvas to capture a view of the Italian fishing village of Cattora, believed to be a remote portion of what is now Greater Naples and the Isola D’Ischia on the horizon beyond. Note the moorish influence to the architecture in the small village and the red terra cotta rooftops, while the virgin forest grows right to the town.
A Mediterranean lateen-rigged fishing boat, with the rust-red & light beige sails often found on craft in these waters, cuts a perpendicular line to the inlet. Small commercial fisheries still exist today along the Italian shores, keeping their markets supplied with some of the freshest seafood in Europe. The people onshore are a bit less ambitious about their quests. As a woman walks the path, another pair catch a brief rest while they talk with mule driver. All four are dressed in colorful, late 19th century peasant garb.
Dommersen’s familiarity with many European regions led him to feel right at home throughout Europe. While most of his scenes are Dutch, his Italian works share a pastoral quality of soft illumination and relaxing emotion. Almost always of the coastal waters, he expertly combines landscape and atmosphere to paint compositions which translate the entirety of an area. Cattora has since grown and evolved into a much greater metropolis, but will remain ever charming in his view.
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