Joseph Mallord William Turner

Tours Cathedral

c.1826–8

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Watercolour, gouache and pen and watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 128 x 187 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D24637
Turner Bequest CCLIX 72

Catalogue entry

This view of the cathedral and gate to the bishop’s palace, as seen from the Place de l'Archevêché, is one of several depictions of Tours in gouache and watercolour on blue paper which Turner worked up after his 1826 tour of the Loire Valley. The work is related to a pencil sketch of the cathedral from this tour; see entry for Tate D34677 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 242).1 However the pencil sketch over which this colour study is built up may have been taken on the spot as no other study has survived of the gate to the bishop’s palace.2 See the Introduction to this section for a list of comparable studies of the city.
1
Ian Warrell, Turner on the Loire, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1997, pp.216 no. 25, 222 no.85.
2
Ibid.
Technical Notes:
The sheet belongs to a batch of dense blue paper with dark fibres used by Turner made by George Steart of Bally, Ellen and Steart at De Montault Mill, Coombe Down, Bath.1
1
Ibid. p.238.
Verso:
Inscribed in pencil with the notes ‘12’ in the top left-hand corner of the sheet, and ‘CCLIX 72’ and ‘1b’ in the centre. Stamped in black with the Turner Bequest monogram and ‘CCLIX 72’ in the centre of the sheet.

John Chu
March 2016

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