Turner Bequest CLXXIX 14
Inscribed by the artist in pencil with various notes on the loggia decorations [see main catalogue entry]
Inscribed by ?John Ruskin in blue ink ‘14’ top right
Stamped in black ‘CLXXIX 14’ bottom right
The sketch on the left-hand side of the page represents a general view of the southern end wall of the loggia. The fresco visible within the ceiling vault is The Creation of the Animals by Pellegrino da Modena (circa 1490–1523) and Giovanni da Udine (1487–1564),6 whilst beneath this are the lunette and fresco panels above the doorway added by Pope Paul III, which altered the original Leonine grotesque designs.7 Turner has accompanied the study with written notes pertaining to the details and colours of the fresco and stucco decorations including, from top to bottom: ‘Blue Blue’ beneath the winged figure on the ceiling; ‘W’ and ‘G’, ‘orange’ within the border above the arch; ‘Dark Blue | Ground Dark Cho | Border Yellow | strip’ within the central lunette; ‘Y | These Green | the Head from | Green’ and ‘as the Hon’ bottom left; and ‘Grey’ ‘Green B Oro G R’ at the bottom within the doorway. At the top right of the drawing the artist has added further extensive comments on the ceiling frescoes, particularly referring to God separates Light from Darkness by Giulio Romano (circa 1499–1546) and the Creation of the Sun and Moon by Guillaume de Marcillat (circa 1467/70–1529). The inscription reads: ‘Deity Lake with Light of White | the upper one Light ground | the Band dark green with yellow arabesque | God divides Darkness from Light over the door | and the Sun and Moon opposite a Light Gr Figures both Lake | each of them is held | with an angel in red lake | upon a Blue ground’ and ‘all the Arch W plaster yellow Spandrel figure W | Signs of the Zodiac and ornamented with amorini’.
The central group of sketches represents a detailed record of the decorations from one side of the doorway at the end of the loggia, including the dado and the frescoed imprese panels of Pope Paul III (pictorial designs incorporating a motto or word symbolising the name of the owner or patron).8 This part of the decorative scheme is no longer situ.9 The sketches are annotated with written comments including, from top to bottom: ‘Dado | green | gold’, ‘Light | Lake Border’, ‘simulation | of porphyry | [?cold] purple the | opposite corner’, and ‘orange’ within the rectangular panel at the bottom of the page.
The third group of sketches on the right-hand side of the page depicts details of the stucco and grotesque decorations from the lateral side of the first external pier extending to the first external transverse arch above (i.e. between the end of the loggia and the first window).10 On the left is the lower section of the pilaster, whilst continuing on the right is the upper part of the pilaster and the curve of the transverse arch above. Furthermore, Turner has drawn a separate thumbnail study of the two figures that appear in the central medallion from this scheme.11 The drawing is annotated with colour notes including ‘Dark’, ‘Lake’, ‘Blue’, ‘Yellow | B’, and, in the top right-hand corner, ‘Gold’. In addition there is a more extensive description relating to ...: ‘White Horse | upon Green Lilac Border | then the Red or White line in the middle of [...] | and Jewels at angles and middle of | each subject [?Brass] or Gold on the Green’. The fresco details from this pilaster have suffered damage from previous exposure to the elements and are now much faded.
How to cite
Nicola Moorby, ‘Details of the Decorations of Raphael’s Loggia in the Vatican: the Southern End and the First External Pier 1819 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, January 2010, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2012, https://www