Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Dogana and Santa Maria della Salute, Venice, at Twilight, with the Entrance to the Grand Canal

1840

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite, watercolour and bodycolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 188 x 279 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D32201
Turner Bequest CCCXVII 16

Catalogue entry

This familiar scene is shown from the middle of the Bacino, looking west-north-west to the domes of Santa Maria della Salute and the porch of the Dogana, with the campanili of Santo Stefano and San Moisè beyond on the north side of the Grand Canal.
Ian Warrell has noted that this grey sheet and the technically similar Tate D32201 ( Turner Bequest CCCXVII 16), with the Salute and Dogana further off, ‘combine the economy of Turner’s graphic shorthand with broadly applied pastel washes’;1 compare also D32200 (CCCXVII 15), a less developed Salute view.2 He continues: ‘Though his colour here is incredibly distilled, it is possible to recognise the orange tone in [the present work] as a watered-down version of the more lurid colour’ in D32203 (CCCXVII 18), a strongly hued sunset scene on the Lagoon.3
1
Warrell 2003, p.215.
2
See ibid., p.264 note 17.
3
Ibid., p.215; see also p.235.
Technical notes:
As well as defining architectural details with conventional pencil,1 Ian Warrell has suggested that Turner ‘may also have experimented here with the use of a red chalk or crayon to build up some of his detail’,2 at the far left and across the right-hand side.
This is one of numerous 1840 Venice works Ian Warrell has noted as being on ‘Bally, Ellen and Steart grey paper’ which Turner had also used on his Continental tour of 1833, including Venice, and therefore ‘the dating of some of these sheets in uncertain’ (see in particular Tate D32205–D32210; Turner Bequest CCCXVII 20–25); the following ‘seem to arise from the later visit’:3 Tate D32180–D32181, D32183–D32184, D32200–D32201, D32203–D32204, D32212, D32215, D32217 (Turner Bequest CCCXVII 1, 2, 4, 5, 15, 16, 18, 19, 27–30, 32); see also Venice: San Giorgio Maggiore and the Zitelle from the Giudecca (currently untraced)4 and The Doge’s Palace from the Bacino (private collection),5 and two further ‘half-size sheets’:6 Tate D33883 (Turner Bequest CCCXLI 183), and Shipping with Buildings, ?Venice (Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge).7
1
See Upstone 193, p.37.
2
Warrell 2003, p.215.
3
‘Appendix: The papers used for Turner’s Venetian Watercolours’ (1840, section 8) in ibid., p.259.
4
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.464 no.1367, reproduced.
5
Not in ibid.; Warrell 2003, fig.233 (colour).
6
Warrell 2003, p.259.
7
Wilton 1979, p.423 no.1037, reproduced.
Verso:
Blank; inscribed in pencil ‘19’ above centre, ascending vertically; stamped in black with Turner Bequest monogram over ‘CCCXVII – 16’ towards bottom left.

Matthew Imms
July 2018

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