Joseph Mallord William Turner

Saumur, Loire Valley


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Watercolour, gouache and pen and watercolour on paper
Support: 130 × 190 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLIX 145

Display caption

Turner travelled along the River Loire from Nantes to Orleans in 1826. The sketches made on this journey served as the basis for coloured designs later engraved for 'Turner's Annual Tour - the Loire', published in 1833. There is some debate over the likely date Turner executed the group of watercolours, it being most probable that they were finished before 1830. The majority of the engraved subjects are now in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, but, as the group exhibited here demonstrates, there are several related works in the Turner Bequest which are either views of the same scenery or which are similar in technique.

Gallery label, August 2004

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Catalogue entry

This depiction of the old bridge and château of Saumur as seen from the westis one of several colour studies of this town which Turner worked up from his 1826 tour of the Loire Valley. It was used as the basis for an illustration published in the popular Keepsake annual of 1831; see Tate impression T05107.1 See the Introduction to this section for a list of comparable studies of the town.
Ian Warrell, Turner on the Loire, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1997, p.184.
Technical Notes:
The sheet belongs to a batch of blue paper with red fibres used by Turner made by George Steart of Bally, Ellen and Steart at De Montault Mill, Coombe Down, Bath. Another sheet from the batch bears a watermark dated 1828. 1
Ibid. p.238.
See entry for Tate D24710 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 145).

John Chu
March 2016

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