Joseph Mallord William Turner

Fribourg: The Convent

1841

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite, watercolour and pen and ink on paper
Dimensions
Support: 235 x 336 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D33556
Turner Bequest CCCXXXV 16

Display caption

Turner toured Switzerland every year from 1841 to 1844, each trip lasting an average of three months. He was fascinated by the dramatic landscape of the mountains, the ethereal effects of atmosphere and light, and by picturesque Swiss towns and shimmering Alpine lakes. The majority of watercolours in the Turner Bequest from the 1840s are devoted to Swiss subjects.
Freiburg is one of the most picturesque towns in Switzerland, noted for the series of medieval defensive towers and battlements sited on the cliffs which rise steeply behind it. Turner made a whole series of watercolours of the town in 1841, drawing it from every angle and exploiting the dramatic vistas from the cliffs.

Gallery label, September 2004

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