Joseph Mallord William Turner

Studies of Classical Buildings, a Tree and a Wooded Landscape


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 185 × 112 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXV 57

Catalogue entry

Although falling among detailed studies of Venice, these scattered studies were not necessarily made there. They have the air of the hurried drawings made while travelling to the city across north-eastern Italy from Milan in the first part of the sketchbook (see the Introduction). Drawn with the page turned vertically, at the top left is a two-storey, arched ‘Doric’ façade, as Turner notes, possibly belonging to a large residence, while at the top right is a more elaborate and substantial ‘Ionic’ portico with what may be flanking bell turrets, suggesting a church.
At the centre left is a rather inconsequential sketch of a tree in isolation, while below, inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, is a cursory landscape, apparently lightly wooded and possibly with towers or spires on the skyline.
For an overview of Turner’s coverage of Venice on surrounding pages, see the sketchbook’s Introduction.

Matthew Imms
March 2017

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