Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Courtyard and Giant’s Staircase of the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace), Venice, with the Porta della Carta at the South-East Corner of the Basilica of San Marco (St Mark’s)


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 123 × 173 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCCXIII 20

Catalogue entry

Finberg later annotated his unspecific 1909 Inventory entry (‘Courtyard of Palace’): ‘Giants’ Stairway, Courtyd D’s Pal.’1 The Turner scholar C.F. Bell marked another copy: ‘Porta della Carta & Scala dei Giganti’.2 With the page turned horizontally, the viewpoint is the confined space in the north-east corner of the courtyard of the Palazzo Ducale (Doge’s Palace), hemmed in to the south by the Scala dei Giganti (Giant’s Staircase), with its huge statues of Mars and Neptune; the Arco Foscari entrance to the Porta della Carta arcade at the south-east corner of the Basilica is towards the right.
The numbers at the bottom centre, like those in another view on folio 18 recto (D31825), relate to the articulation of the staircase. See under folio 2 verso (D31794) for other views.

Matthew Imms
September 2018

Undated MS note by Finberg (died 1939) in interleaved copy of Finberg 1909, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain, II, opposite p.1010.
Undated MS note by Bell (died 1966) in copy of Finberg 1909, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain, II, p.1010.

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