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Turner travelled along the River Loire from Nantes to Orleans in 1826. The sketches made on this journey served as the basis for coloured designs later engraved for 'Turner's Annual Tour - the Loire', published in 1833. There is some debate over the likely date Turner executed the group of watercolours, it being most probable that they were finished before 1830. The majority of the engraved subjects are now in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, but, as the group exhibited here demonstrates, there are several related works in the Turner Bequest which are either views of the same scenery or which are similar in technique.

August 2004