About this artwork

Echoes of Turner's interest in architectural drawing as a young artist are found in this late work, which celebrates the unique atmospheric qualities of Venice. Details in pen and ink define the seventeenth-century church of Santa Maria della Salute which appears through a fine haze, evocative of bright sunlight reflecting off the white marble walls and the water of the Grand Canal. This drawing is characteristic of the work Turner produced during his third and final visit to Venice in 1840.

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Joseph Mallord William Turner

Joseph Mallord William Turner

Turner transformed the art of landscape painting in Britain. From detailed topographical studies to expansive, atmospheric vistas his works celebrate the diversity and emotive power of nature. He was born in Covent Garden, the son of a barber, and exhibited his earliest sketches in his father's shop before studying at the Royal Academy Schools. Turner became the youngest ever full member of the Royal Academy in 1802. His experimental use of watercolour and oils achieved stunning effects, attracting contemporary criticism and praise. Turner's admiration of past masters, above all Claude Lorraine, and the numerous sketches made on many tours in Britain and abroad, provided the basis for his 'sublime' land and seascapes.