Joseph Mallord William Turner

Four Views on Lake Maggiore; Including Luino, the Castelli Cannero and the Rocca di Caldé


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 111 × 186 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXIV 74 a

Catalogue entry

Turner’s tour of the Italian Lakes took him from Lake Lugano to Lake Maggiore where he arrived at Luino, a small town on the eastern shore. The four sketches on this page are all views of the lake from, or near, Luino. The artist has recorded almost a 360 degree panorama of the landscape looking south, west and north.
The uppermost sketch represents a view of Luino itself looking south along the shoreline from the Church of St Giuseppe, the building on the left-hand side of the composition.1 Related studies of the church, with its distinctive porch, can be found on folios 4 verso and 75 (D14151 and D14288; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 3c and 74).
As Turner’s inscription indicates the second sketch from the top depicts the Castelli di Cannero (Castles of Cannero), a group of rocky islets which lie off the coast of the Cannero Riviera, directly opposite Luino on the western shore.2 Two of the islets are topped by ancient ruined fortifications.
The subject of the third sketch from the top is the view looking north from Luino towards the nearby village of Maccagno with Monte Limidario visible in the background.3 Finally the drawing at the bottom represents the view looking south from the waters of the lake and depicts the Rocca di Caldé on the eastern shore.4
Also at the bottom of the page are some further pencil lines which belong to the landscape compositions on the opposite sheet of the double-page spread, see folio 76 (D14290; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 75).
For further sketches of Lake Maggiore between Luino and Baveno, including the Borromean islands, see folios 76–78 verso (D14290–D14297; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 75–78a).

Nicola Moorby
January 2013

See Crimi 2009, p.60.

Read full Catalogue entry

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