Although considered a minor genre for a long time, the art of landscape has risen above its forebears - religious and historic painting - to become a genre of its own.
Canaletto began his career as a theatrical scene painter, like his father, in the Baroque tradition. Influenced by Giovanni Panini, he is specialised in vedute (views) of Venice, his birth place. Strong contrast between light and shadow is typical of this artist. Furthermore, if some of those views are purely topographical, others include festivals or ceremonial subjects.