NOT often do the worlds of fine art and beach volley ball collide but take a look at this London panorama by Canaletto (1697-1768) and see if the London landmark it depicts looks familiar.
If you were glued to the Olympics it just might, since in the foreground is Horse Guards Parade where monarchs traditionally take the salute at the Trooping of the Colour ceremony.
However, during the Olympics the vast parade ground became better known throughout the world as the venue for beach volley ball with maximum press coverage of female competitors rolling in the sandpit clad in skimpy bikinis.
In contrast, ‘New Horse Guards from St. James’s Park’ by Canaletto is an important historical document, a rare view of the building under construction in 1753.
It will be offered by Dorotheum in Vienna on October 17 with an estimate of €2-3m.
Dorotheum hold the record price for a work of art sold at auction in Austria set when ‘Man choosing between Vice and Virtue’ by Frans Francken sold for €7.02m in April 2010. It went to St. James’s dealer Johnny van Haeften who sold it at Maastricht with an asking price of $14m.