Joseph Mallord William Turner

Figures beside a Barge on the Molo, Venice, with the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace), and the Dogana and Santa Maria della Salute Beyond; the Molo Arcade of the Palace

1840

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 89 × 149 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D32436
Turner Bequest CCCXX 88 a

Catalogue entry

Finberg later annotated his 1909 Inventory entry (‘View from the Molo’): ‘Doge’s Pal, with Dogana & Salute beyond’.1 With the page turned horizontally, the view is north-west from the Bacino waterfront in the right foreground, where figures are gathered on the quay near what is likely a small ceremonial barge. Beyond, increasingly slightly rendered from right to left, are the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace), the entrance to the Piazzetta, and the Libreria Sansoviniana and Zecca (Mint), with the domes of Santa Maria della Salute and the porch of the Dogana in the distance on the left, at the entrance to the Grand Canal.
The latter elements are west-south-west of the viewpoint, and brought in through considerable lateral compression; compare a contemporary colour study on grey paper (Tate D32180; Turner Bequest CCCXVII 1), under which other views are noted. Below, the other way up, is an elevation of the Molo arcade of the Doge’s Palace.
The horizontal view on folio 89 recto opposite (D32437) continues the view to the right, effectively forming a panorama with this one.

Matthew Imms
September 2018

1
Undated MS note by Finberg (died 1939) in interleaved copy of Finberg 1909, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain, II, opposite p.1033; see also Finberg 1930, p.171.

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