Joseph Mallord William Turner

Brienne-le-Château, Northern France

1832

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 175 x 127 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D24383
Turner Bequest CCLVII 110

Catalogue entry

With the sketchbook turned horizontally, Turner filled the top half of this page with a view of Brienne-le-Château, situated around one hundred miles east of Paris. The Church of Saint-Pierre-et-Saint-Paul, prior to the modification of its roof around the apse, dominates the left-hand side of the page. Napoleon studied at the military academy close by so this site was of particular interest to the artist as he sought subjects to illustrate a new edition of Walter Scott’s Life of Napoleon Buonaparte (1834–36). The town along with the church is featured in one of the volume’s engraved illustrations; see Tate impression T04969. A list of pages in the present volume featuring this subject is provided in the sketchbook Introduction.

John Chu
January 2015

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