Joseph Mallord William Turner

Blois, Loire Valley


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In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 103 × 153 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXLIX 20 a

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This book charts Turner's journey from a little to the west of Tours, up the River Loire to Orleans, and concludes with a group of studies in Paris. Tne focus of Turner's investigations wherever he stopped tended to be the distinctive architectural features. Thus at Blois he made sketches of the elegant bridge and the Renaissance facade of the great chateau. As is the case in the sketches displayed here, his observations were sometimes generalised, so that when he came to develop them in colour, he was also dependent on his memory and his knowledge of architectural logic. However, the view he developed of the Facade des Loges (no.124) ignored the asymmetry that adds such character to the actual building.

Gallery label, August 2004

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