Corrodi, Hermann David Salomon (1844-1905)
Corrodi travelled extensively to the Near East in the 1860s and 1870s. The painting is a pastiche of the shore of Larnaca town the church of Agios Georgios Makris and the salt lake of Larnaca. The house built with Cypriot sandstone bears features of local architecture such as the Gothic arch surmounting rough Corinthian columns. The house is two-storied, by the sea with a covered verandah to provide shelter from the sun. Such large houses existed until the end of the 19th century in Larnaca town and belonged mostly to consuls of foreign nations. The palm tree appearing through the arches and the climbing vine entwined in the pergola of the verandah attest to local vegetation as well as the small sweet william and the small wild roses. On the opposite side of the painting, tall slender Cypress trees partly obscure buildings of some kind of religious establishment with a white and rounded roof visible amongst the trees. A young girl is wearing a Cypriot costume of the style worn by the urban population during that period. It consists of a full red skirt with a shorter overskirt on top, a red scarf on her shoulders and a very distinguishable Greek style gilet in blue with gold trimmings. As she is young, the skirt is not full length but to mid-calf. The costume is a version of the Queen Amalia costume that was popular in Cyprus in the end of the 19th century. She is wearing gold hoop earrings that were a status symbol and her hair is plated into two long black plates interwoven with red ribbons, often done in this manner by young girls. She is barefoot but this does not detract from her status. The heat of Cyprus allowed the young to go about without shoes, this not necessarily denoting poverty. Moreover, the artist is building the impression of a young girl at great ease, posing casually in her own environment. Doves are present in the picture. According to Cypriot tradition, these were the sacred birds of Aphrodite. Images of doves prevail in local handicraft, woodcarvings and embroideries carrying a special meaning of peace and love. The artist was perhaps aware of the local significance of the bird and made use of it as a symbol of the country. The entire picture incorporates those quintessentially local elements of architecture, costume, flora and fauna which attest to Cypriotness. The painting emanates a serene and romantic atmosphere reinforced by the magnificent colours of the rising sun from the blue sea. The artist excelled himself in creating this atmosphere by the use of the warm and glowing light which spreads and lightens into the sky above, in luminous shades of an autumn morning.
100 x 65 cm
Signed: H. Corrodi
Larnaca in Cyprus
Birds, Clothing And Dress, Traditional Costumes, Animals, Coasts, Buildings,Structures,Etc
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