Joseph Mallord William Turner

Distant View of Naples and Vesuvius from Via Posillipo


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 113 × 189 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 84

Catalogue entry

Turner travelled the length of the Posillipo coastline on a new road built during the early nineteenth century, the Via Posillipo. This sketch depicts the view looking east across the Bay of Naples towards the distant city on the left and Vesuvius on the right. The summit of the volcano is wreathed in cloud and there is a small smoke trail emanating from the cone. Turner’s viewpoint appears to be a point on the road near the historic villas of Roccaromana and Martinelli (near present-day Piazza San Luigi).
For further views from the Via Posillipo see folios 83 verso–87 (D16070–D16077; Turner Bequest CLXXXVI 81a–85), as well as the Gandolfo to Naples sketchbook (Tate D15669; Turner Bequest 56a) and the Naples: Rome C. Studies sketchbook (Tate D16094–6, D16106; Turner Bequest CLXXXVII 7–9, 18).

Nicola Moorby
August 2010

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