Technique and condition
Turner worked gouache and watercolour paints onto this sheet of blue paper to depict an aqueduct or viaduct crossing a valley. On stylistic grounds, Art historian Ian Warrell linked this piece to the ‘colour studies’ of northern French subjects which the artist painted the early 1830s with a view to engraved illustration; the lost Roman aqueduct at Arcueil south of Paris was proposed as the motif at that point.1 Certainly Turner had taken considerable interest in this terrain during earlier tours; see, for example, Tate D24525 (Turner Bequest CCLVIII 13a) in the Dieppe, Rouen and Paris sketchbook of 1821.
Ian Warrell, Turner on the Seine, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1999, pp.23, 252 note 39.
The centre of the sheet is inscribed with a pencil note reading ‘22a’. The Tate number ‘D.20255’ is inscribed in the bottom right-hand corner in pencil. There is a slight water stain towards the bottom left-hand corner.