Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Grand Canal, Venice, off Santa Maria della Salute


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 66

Catalogue entry

Finberg later annotated his basic 1909 Inventory entry (‘Buildings’): ‘on Gd. Canal’.1 The view is to the west from just east of Santa Maria della Salute, indicated only by the loosely rendered half-columns beside its north door on the left, with the apse of the church of San Gregorio below to the right. On the right the most prominent building is the Palazzo Corner della Ca’ Granda.
The receding space between San Gregorio and the palace is rather laterally condensed. The detail at the top shows the roofline and turret of Palazzi Contarini degli Scrigni e Corfù, at the far end of this stretch, where the canal turns northwards to the right; these features also caught Turner’s attention in the 1833 Venice sketchbook (Tate D32093; Turner Bequest CCCXIV 89).
Compare the present drawing with the clearer view from further back on folio 56 recto (D31900), and a contemporary watercolour study in the Grand Canal and Giudecca sketchbook (Tate D32121; Turner Bequest CCCXV 5).
Undated MS note by Finberg (died 1939) in interleaved copy of Finberg 1909, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain, II, p.1012.
Technical notes:
The five leaves at the back of this sketchbook were apparently detached by accident or design at some stage; folios 66 and 67 (Tate D31920–D31923) are now secured to stubs formed by a narrow folded strip of modern paper, while folios 68, 69 and 70 (D31924–D31928) have been attached and reinforced at the gutter with thin Japanese-type conservation paper.

Matthew Imms
February 2018

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