David Roberts
The Porch of St Maclou, Rouen 1829

Artwork details

David Roberts 1796–1864
The Porch of St Maclou, Rouen
Date 1829
Medium Oil paint on wood
Dimensions Support: 546 x 406 mm
frame: 672 x 540 x 80 mm
Acquisition Bequeathed by Sir Henry Layard GCB 1913
On display at Tate Britain
Room: 1810

Display caption

The medieval architecture of France and the fine examples of Gothic to be seen in cities like Rouen became popular themes for artists during the 1820s. British artists responded enthusiastically, extending their tradition of the picturesque tour to continental scenery and antiquities, while French artists and writers directed attention to monuments and religious relics recently neglected or defaced as a result of the Revolution. For Charles Nodier, Rouen was the ‘Herculaneum of the Middle Ages’. More than a detailed study of architecture, Roberts’s picture of St Maclou is intended as a moody evocation of a lost age of faith.

February 2016

About this artwork