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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Sketches from the Road between Turin and Bofflora; One with Distant Alps 1819

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 41 Verso:
Sketches from the Road between Turin and Bofflora; One with Distant Alps 1819
Turner Bequest CLXXIV 40 a
Pencil on white wove paper, 111 x 186 mm
Inscribed by the artist in pencil ‘13 [...] | [?Diligence] [?1/2 ...] | [...]’ bottom left
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The sketches on folios 41 verso–42 verso (D14224–D14226; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 40a–41a) appear to depict views of the landscape between Turin and Boffalora, seen during Turner’s journey en route to Milan. The precise locations have not been identified but visible on this page are two separate drawings, both depicting sweeping views of the countryside. The upper vista includes some distant buildings or towns and the background is dominated by line of the Alps, indicating that Turner is looking north-west, possibly soon after his departure from Turin. The panoramic composition continues on the opposite sheet of the double-page spread, see folio 42 (D14225; Turner Bequest CLXXIV 41).
The lower study contains a brief and largely illegible annotation which indicates that the artist was travelling by diligence, a large carriage which was the main public mode of transport in France and northern Italy. For a sketch depicting a diligence see the Paris, France, Savoy 2 sketchbook (Tate D14041; Turner Bequest CLXXIII 32a). Federico Crimi has discovered that the diligence trips between Turin and Milan ran three times weekly, on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.1

Nicola Moorby
January 2013

Information from L’interprete milanese, ossia guida per l’anno 1823, Milan 1823. See Crimi 2007, p.25 note 22.

How to cite

Nicola Moorby, ‘Sketches from the Road between Turin and Bofflora; One with Distant Alps 1819 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, January 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, August 2013, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-sketches-from-the-road-between-turin-and-bofflora-one-with-r1142745, accessed 16 January 2021.