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Vittore Carpaccio painted Miracle of the Relic of the True Cross at the Rialto Bridge between 1494 and 1496, just prior to the time period of The Last Merman. Carpaccio has a significant role in the story.

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I created a role for the Black gondolier in The Last Merman.

 

And note the image of the mermaid in the painting.

I didn't make that up.

VITTORE CARPACCIO