America Meets an Italian Impressionist

People and horses walk through a sunlit square in front of the shell of a long, two-story damaged building.
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The Phillips Collection in Washington DC introduces America to the work of Italian artist, Giuseppe De Nittis in the exhibition, “An Italian Impressionist in Paris: Giuseppe De Nittis” on view Nov 12, 2022–Feb 12, 2023.

De Nittis was from the City of Barletta in Puglia and many of the 73 works displayed come from the Pinacoteca Giuseppe De Nittis, a museum dedicated to the artist in his hometown. He got his early art education in Naples before moving to Paris in 1867 when he was 21. A few years later Edgar Degas, whom he likely first met in Naples, invited him to exhibit in the first Impressionist exhibition. Visitors will discover his friendship with Degas, as well as Manet and Caillebotte, whose works are also on display. 

Two men dressed in work clothes walk towards on a dusty road in a sunny landscape. They pass a horse-drawn carriage going the opposite way.
“The Road from Naples to Brindisi” (formerly known as “The Road from Brindisi to Barletta”), 1872, oil on canvas.

Blending traditional Salon style with the innovations of his colleagues, De Nittis depicted the stylish high society of Paris as the city rebounded from the destruction of the Franco-Prussian war, as well as continuing to depict the sun-drenched scenes of southern Italian life he was known for early in his career. London became another inspiring location for the artist. 

A man and woman stand outdoors looking to our right in profile. They are fashionably dressed in dark 19th-century clothing and the woman stands on a chair.
“The Races at Auteuil, Paris─On the Chair,” 1883, oil on canvas.
People and horses walk through a sunlit square in front of the shell of a long, two-story damaged building.
“The Place du Carrousel: The Ruins of the Tuileries.” 1882, oil on panel.
People in 19th-century clothing walk along a crowded sidewalk and street next to a stone building. A horse-drawn carriage drives towards us, away from a church in the background.
“The National Gallery and the Church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields (London),” 1878, oil on canvas

The Phillips describes De Nittis as “a central figure to the aesthetic and institutional upheaval of 1870s Paris” and Phillips Vradenburg Director and CEO Dorothy Kosinski calls the artist “a major figure in the Impressionism period” who “wasn’t heralded in the United States in the same way we think of Degas and Manet.” 

The exhibition has been organized with the patronage of the Italian Ministry of Culture in collaboration with the Pinacoteca Giuseppe De Nittis, the City of Barletta, Italy and the Region of Puglia with the Fondazione Pino Pascali; additional support is provided by the Embassy of Italy, Washington, D.C. and the Italian Cultural Institute, Washington, D.C.

Tickets and information on related events are available at 


Nov 12, 2022–Feb 12, 2023

The Phillips Collection, Washington DC 

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