Joseph Mallord William Turner

Three Views in the Maurienne Valley, Savoy; including Two of the Tour du Châtel


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 185 × 114 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXIII 81 a

Catalogue entry

This page contains three sketches depicting views in the Maurienne Valley, Savoy, on the approach towards St-Jean-de-Maurienne, the capital city of the valley. Turner’s draughtsmanship is rather rough and schematic. However, the two lower drawings clearly show a square tower perched on the rocky slopes above the floor of the valley and this can be identified as the Tour du Châtel, also known as the Tour de Bérold, an ancient tower which is located near the village of Châtel, approximately a mile and a half north of St-Jean-de-Maurienne. According to tradition the founder of the House of Savoy, Humbert the White Hands died here in 1048. A related view of the tower can be found on folio 82 (D14128).
The uppermost vista appears to include a bridge and a small part of the composition at the top spills over onto the opposite sheet of the double-page spread, see folio 81 (D14126).

Nicola Moorby
March 2013

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