Most of the other artists who painted the river crossing at Pont-de-l'Arche made it an excuse for picturesque depictions of the ramshackle old bridge (that by Gendall is on display in a showcase in the first room of the exhibition, downstairs). Turner, on the other hand, chose to ignore the mills lining the bridge, even though he had recorded them on the spot in 1829, and instead produced a distinctly modern-looking structure. In following the road to Paris from Rouen, Pont-de-l'Arche is the next town of any note encountered by the traveller. However, in the published sequence of the 1835 *Annual Tour*, this view was placed after the views of Château Gaillard and Vernon, which are further upstream.
Gallery label, August 2004