View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms
Mars and Venus. Domenino [Finberg: Domenichino] | This is a good specimen of his | high color’d pictures but is not a good | composition as it is destitute of Grace | in Venus and dignity in Mars The Cupid | is trifling with a bow although the idea | is pretty the light is well managed tho | the shadow on Cupid’s shoulder for the head | of Venus is too small and the piece of white | at the Right of the Picture looks like Marble | but White is highly useful for it | gives the flesh a colour by its own | chalkiness | Upon a rich dark ground. | Venus – the ½ shadow cold yet inclining to | green produced by the first cold V [Finberg: U (or N)] over the ground. The vermillion or VR over which is rather feeble. This Brown over V in Shadow. The [continued on the verso, D04320] light with W Yellow perhaps too chalky, to | check which I take the piece of White to be | introduced, altho’ ineffectual owing to its position | the yellow drapery is produced by R. yellow over | the ground and glazed by Brown the Red the | same. The leaden colour’d drapery is unfortunate | as to tone and place, as it contributes to make the flesh too green.
Gage, without remarking the misattribution, notes that Turner’s comments show him already alert to colour contrast.