Joseph Mallord William Turner

Sketches of Naples and Vesuvius, from the Sea

1819

Not on display
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 113 x 189 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D15927
Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 10 a

Catalogue entry

As Finberg first identified, the sequence of sketches on folios 3 verso–12 (D15913–D15919 and D15922–D15930) represents detailed panoramic views of Naples drawn from the sea.1 The artist perhaps had the opportunity to make these drawings from a boat during the outward or return trip to Paestum and the Amalfi coast. This page contains two studies. The upper vista depicts Vesuvius from the west with its ever-present smoke trail emanating from the crater, whilst the lower vista represents part of a view of the Neapolitan shoreline to the west of the Castel dell’Ovo including the Chiaia waterfront and Mergellina to Posillipo. The composition continues on the opposite sheet of the double-page spread, see folio 11 (D15928).

Nicola Moorby
July 2010

1
Finberg 1909, p.551.

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