Joseph Mallord William Turner

A Grand Interior with Arched Windows ?at the Château d’Eu


View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite, gouache and watercolour on paper
Support: 232 x 332 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCCLX 21

Catalogue entry

This is one of the four loose watercolour sketches towards the back of the volume as foliated depicting figures in sumptuously appointed interiors. The others are the versos of folios 19, 21 and 22 (D35478, D35482, D35484; Turner Bequest CCCLX 20, 22, 23). In this instance, the light from large arched apertures at the rear penetrates a grand hall or chamber. As set out in the Introduction to this tour, there is evidence to suggest that King Louis-Philippe summoned Turner on this trip in order to record the events of Queen Victoria’s second visit to the Château d’Eu, located some twenty miles up the coast from Dieppe. The arched windows here are consistent with those on the main block of the Château d’Eu as detailed in the meticulous watercolours commissioned from Eugène Lami (1800–1890) by Louis-Philippe as a gift for Victoria to commemorate her 1843 visit.1 See especially Lami’s Royal Visit to Louis-Philippe: arrival of Queen Victoria at the Château d’Eu 1843 (Royal Collection).2
For reasons set out in the Technical notes in the sketchbook Introduction, this work appears inverted in relation to the volume as foliated.
Paul André Lemoisne, L’OEuvre d’Eugène Lami (1800–1890) Lithographes-dessins-aquarelles-peintres. Essai d’un catalogue raisonné, Paris 1914, pp.116–20, nos. 495, 496, 498, 500, 502, 504, 506, 507.
For further depictions of the Château d’Eu in the 1840s, see also Pierre F.L. Fontaine, Château d’Eu, Paris c.1845.
Technical notes:
Turner mostly worked on the rectos of this sketchbook as foliated with the exception of four sketches, including this one, which feature on the verso. After the volume entered the national collection John Ruskin numbered each folio on the bottom right of each recto in a single sequence, irrespective of the side of the page upon which the drawing appeared. As a consequence, Ruskin’s red ink number and the subsequent stamped Turner Bequest number appear on the other side of the leaf. The recto is otherwise blank except for patches of watercolour transference and brush-strokes continued over from folio 19 verso opposite (D35478; Turner Bequest CCCLX 20) and a faint red ink ‘6’ inscribed upside down at the top left of the page.

John Chu
February 2014

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