Turner's oil painting of the city of Venice. He depicts a reflective river, gondolas, bright blue skies and a figure painting on an easel, which is said to be the great Venetian painter Antonio Canaletto.
Joseph Mallord William Turner
Bridge of Sighs, Ducal Palace and Custom-House, Venice: Canaletti Painting
51.1 x 81.6 cm
Oil on mahogany
Date of work
Joseph Mallord William Turner was born in London; he remained a Londoner and kept a Cockney accent all his life despite dominating British landscape painting throughout the first half of the 19th century. He established a reputation in the Royal Academy, first as a topographical watercolourist and then within a few years as a painter of sublime and historical landscapes. From the mid-1790s he settled on the routine he maintained for much of his life: touring in summer and working in the studio in the winter months. He opened his own gallery and had many patrons and admirers as well as detractors. After his death a large body of his works in oil and watercolour was given to the British nation, with many on show at Tate Britain.