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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner The Porte Saint-Denis, Paris c.1833

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
The Porte Saint-Denis, Paris c.1833
Turner Bequest CCLIX 6
Gouache and watercolour with pen on blue paper, 142 x 194 mm
Blind-stamped with the Turner Bequest monogram bottom right
Stamped in black ‘CCLIX 6’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner worked gouache and watercolour paints onto this sheet of blue paper to depict the seventeenth-century Porte Saint-Denis, located amidst the Parisian right-bank boulevards. The Porte Saint-Martin can also be made out in the background while, at street level, the bustle of the city is rendered in delicate strokes of ochre. Art historian Ian Warrell has identified two drawings in the Paris and Environs sketchbook of a similar date as the basis for this composition: see Tate D24249 (Turner Bequest CCLVII 42a) and D24494 (Turner Bequest CCLIII 167).1 The existence of the present colour study suggests that Turner considered the subject as an illustration for Turner’s Annual Tour: Wanderings by the Loire and Seine (1833–5; later reissued as Rivers of France)2 although the Porte Saint-Denis did not make it into this publication in the event.
Ian Warrell, Turner on the Seine, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1999, p.272.
W[illiam] G[eorge] Rawlinson, The Engraved Work of J.M.W. Turner, R.A., London 1908, vol.II, pp.264–76 nos.453–92.
The verso of this sheet is attached to the mount.

John Chu
August 2014

How to cite

John Chu, ‘The Porte Saint-Denis, Paris c.1833 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, August 2014, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, April 2015, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-the-porte-saint-denis-paris-r1173067, accessed 16 January 2021.