Joseph Mallord William Turner

View of the Church of San Franceso, Cava de’ Tirreni; Also a View near Albano, and Hills with a Distant View of the Sea


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Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 113 x 189 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 27

Catalogue entry

The main sketch on this page depicts Cava de’ Tirreni (formerly known as La Cava), which lies amidst the Lattari mountains on the road to Salerno between Nocera and Vietri sul Mare. Turner made a number of drawings of the town, see folio 24 verso (D15955; Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 23a), but this study represents the view from the south-east looking across a viaduct (present-day Via Enrico de Marinis) towards the Church of San Francesco and Sant’Antonio. The church was almost completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1980 although a new building was reconstructed on the same site. A similar view can be seen in a drawing by James Hakewill (1778–1843), La Cava, on the Road to Salerno 1816 (Library of the British School at Rome).1
Also on this page are two small unidentified views. Turner has annotated one of these landscapes ‘Near Albano’, suggesting that they may relate to his return journey between Naples and Rome (see the sketchbook introduction). The other scene, which represents hills with a distant view of the sea, appears to have recalled the works of the Welsh landscape painter Richard Wilson (1713–1782) whose name he has inscribed beneath.

Nicola Moorby
July 2010

Tony Cubberley and Luke Herrmann, Twilight of the Grand Tour: A Catalogue of the drawings by James Hakewill in the British School at Rome Library, Rome 1992, no.5.53, p.284 reproduced.

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