Joseph Mallord William Turner

Porta Asinaria, Rome, from San Giovanni in Laterano


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

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 114 x 189 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXVIII 88

Catalogue entry

Finberg incorrectly identified the subject of this inverted sketch as the Logge of the Vatican. In fact the drawing depicts a view of the Porta Asinaria, a third century gate in the Aurelian Walls, from the portico of San Giovanni in Laterano, the official church of Rome and the seat of the Pope. The composition is similar to that in a drawing by James Hakewill, engraved for Eight Views in Rome and published in 1823.1 For a sketch of the exterior façade of the Porta Asinaria see the Albano, Nemi, Rome sketchbook (Tate D15362; Turner Bequest CLXXXII 36).

Nicola Moorby
January 2009

Tony Cubberley and Luke Herrmann, Twilight of the Grand Tour: A catalogue of the drawings by James Hakewill inthe British School at Rome Library, Rome 1992, p.187. no.3.8, reproduced.

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