This lively scene is based on a rough sketch made while Turner was waiting for the diligence that would take him to Louvain at the very start of his 1839 tour. He modified the architecture of each of the buildings shown, but kept some of their essential characteristics and the as a whole remained the same. In his sketch, the celebrated town hall of Brussels was given only very summary treatment, but his memory gave him sufficient information to show the many ornate tiers of this immensely tall Gothic building in a thoroughly convincing, if somewhat , manner.
Gallery label, August 2004
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