J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Metz Cathedral and Fortifications; Metz Cathedral and Bridges over the Moselle 1839

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 26 Verso:
Metz Cathedral and Fortifications; Metz Cathedral and Bridges over the Moselle 1839
D28218
Turner Bequest CCLXXXVIII 26 a
Pencil on cream laid writing paper, 101 x 168 mm
 
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The principal drawing is a view of Metz Cathedral (Saint-Étienne) taken from outside a fortified wall: part of a network of bulwarks and towered city gates dating back to the thirteenth century. Turner reinforces the sense of aerial perspective here by employing a blunter pencil to render the fortifications in the foreground and using slight, tentative handling to sketch the city and cathedral in the distance.
Below, at bottom left, is a further drawing of Metz Cathedral, outlined in profile and shaded with hatching. Two bridges leading into the city centre are at left and right.
For other representations of Metz in this sketchbook see Tate D28200, D28216, D28217, D28219, D28221, D28222, D28232–D28235; Turner Bequest CCLXXXVIII 17a, 25a, 26, 27, 28, 28a, 34–36. There is also a gouache and watercolour drawing of the city produced on blue paper in 1839 (Tate D24757; Turner Bequest CCLIX 192). For earlier depictions of Metz see the Rivers Meuse and Moselle sketchbook of 1824 (Tate D19706, D19709, D19786; Turner Bequest CCXVI 79, 80a, 118).

Alice Rylance-Watson
May 2013

How to cite

Alice Rylance-Watson, ‘Metz Cathedral and Fortifications; Metz Cathedral and Bridges over the Moselle 1839 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, May 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, November 2014, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-metz-cathedral-and-fortifications-metz-cathedral-and-bridges-r1150495, accessed 18 September 2021.