Joseph Mallord William Turner

Lyon from the River Saône, with the Pont de la Mulatière

1820

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 98 × 128 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D16718
Turner Bequest CXCII 39 a

Catalogue entry

This sketch was formerly catalogued as a view of the Île Barbe, an island in the River Saône to the north of the city.1 However, this identification was based upon a misinterpretation of Turner’s inscription in the bottom left-hand corner which in fact reads ‘Boats’. The composition in fact depicts a view of the river to the south, looking downstream towards the Pont de la Mulatière, a bridge crossing the river near the tip of the Presqu’île (a peninsula created by the two rivers). Built during the eighteenth century, the old bridge was demolished in the late 1820s but, as Turner noted in an inscription on another sheet, it was comprised of ‘11 arches’, see folio 39 (D16715; Turner Bequest CXCII 38).
For further sketches of Lyon see folio 37 verso (D16712; Turner Bequest CXCII 36a).

Nicola Moorby
April 2013

1
Finberg 1909, p.573, and Guillaud, Alfrey, Wilton et al. 1981, p.122.

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