This sketch depicts a view of the Piazza Castello, the most important square in the historic city of Turin. A small part of the composition spills over onto the opposite sheet of the double-page spread, see folio 32 verso (D14207; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 31a). Turner’s viewpoint is the south-west corner of the piazza looking towards the Palazzo Madama, a castle dating from the 1400s which was originally converted from a fortified Roman gate and later, given an elaborate eighteenth-century front with Corinthian pilasters surmounted by a balustrade.1 The artist has made a careful study of the Baroque façade, including additional architectural notes and drawings at the top of the page. A similar but less detailed view can be found on folio 34 (D14210; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 33), and there is also a focused study of part of the façade on folio 33 verso (D14209; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 32a). For an alternative sketch of the castle from the east see folio 28 (D14198; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 27).
Today the building houses the collections of the Museo Civico d’Arte Antica.