John Sell Cotman
Llanthony Abbey 1801

Artwork details

John Sell Cotman 1782–1842
Llanthony Abbey
Date 1801
Medium Watercolour on paper
Dimensions Support: 438 x 330 mm
Acquisition Presented by the Art Fund (Herbert Powell Bequest) 1967
On loan to Pinacoteca do Estado (São Paulo, Brazil)

Display caption

Cotman was slightly younger than Girtin and Turner, but like them he created dramatic compositions showing buildings important to the history of Britain.

In previous generations medieval architecture was considered as simply barbaric, apparently lacking the balance and simplicity of classical styles. Images like this, which cast ruins as the source of Sublime awe, encouraged the appreciation of medieval buildings for their emotional and historic associations.

August 2004

About this artwork