In Ruskin’s Footsteps at Bellinzona: The Salita della Nocca

This article returns the attention of Sublimesites.co to the southern Swiss city of Bellinzona to investigate another site drawn by John Ruskin. Bellinzona has been the subject of two previous articles published on 29 September 2014. The new site is the Salita della Nocca, a narrow, cobbled path that climbs outside the walls to Montebello … Continue reading In Ruskin’s Footsteps at Bellinzona: The Salita della Nocca

Turner at Sallanches, 1836

This article is prompted by a watercolour that Turner made on his tour to the Alps in 1836. That tour was the subject of the exhibition Turner, Mont Blanc and the Val d’Aosta held at the Archaeological Museum in Aosta in 2000. At that time I identified its subject as the French town of Sallanches, … Continue reading Turner at Sallanches, 1836

Turner and Heidelberg: A second Pilkington Foundation Commission

I am pleased to report that Sublimesites has received a second commission from the Pilkington Anglo-Japanese Cultural Foundation. This will fund site research in May into the topography of a wonderful later painting by Turner of Heidelberg. I have always loved the extraordinary crowd, gathered as if at some prototype of Glastonbury to celebrate a … Continue reading Turner and Heidelberg: A second Pilkington Foundation Commission

Turner in Italy: Rome from Mount Aventine, 1836

This article gives some thought to a major painting by J.M.W.Turner, Rome from Mount Aventine, sold at Sotheby’s, London, on 3 December 2014 for £30.3m. Most previous accounts have accepted its topography more-or-less at face value: It turns out to be intriguingly deviant. I spent most of my teaching career extolling the imperative of drawing. … Continue reading Turner in Italy: Rome from Mount Aventine, 1836

Turner on the Rhine: Binger Loch and Mausethurm

On 10 July 2014 Christie’s in London will sell a Turner watercolour of Binger Loch and Mausethurm (lot 214, estimate £200,000 – 300,000). This is one of a series of fifty-one* watercolours that Turner made in 1817 when he made a tour of the river Rhine between Cologne and Mainz. On Turner’s return the whole … Continue reading Turner on the Rhine: Binger Loch and Mausethurm

Turner at Sisteron: The Pont du Buech, looking west

This article is the third to explore Turner’s Sisteron subjects in the light of my recent visit to the site. Here I focus on a watercolour in the collection of the Museum of Rhode Island School of Design that records the view of the Pont du Buech from the west. The bridge spans the river … Continue reading Turner at Sisteron: The Pont du Buech, looking west

Turner at Sisteron: Continued Observations

This article extends the exploration of Turner’s Sisteron subjects in the light of a recent visit 12-14 April. In particular I focus on a watercolour of Sisteron from the North-West that was sold at Christie’s, New York, on 5 November 2013. This was the occasion of my earlier article ‘Moonlight and its implications: Turner at … Continue reading Turner at Sisteron: Continued Observations

Turner at Sisteron: Further Observations

This article furthers the discussion begun in the article ‘Moonlight and its Implications: Turner at Sisteron’, posted on 8 November 2013. This follows a visit to the site on 12-14 April to verify the phenomenon depicted in a Turner watercolour of 'Sisteron from the North-West'. The effect in this watercolour is that of the setting … Continue reading Turner at Sisteron: Further Observations

Turner in Switzerland #3: Zurich by Moonlight

Regular readers (!?) may be thinking that this site is becoming overly sublunary. This is the third article to follow Turner’s footsteps into the night. I ought to confess that I do have at least one other article to write on the theme, but that may wait a little. This one, however, follows hard on … Continue reading Turner in Switzerland #3: Zurich by Moonlight

Turner in Switzerland #2:Lucerne by Moonlight

REVISED VERSION WITH NEW PHOTOS, JUNE 2014 This article seeks to give some consideration to a well-known, but relatively-little-discussed watercolour by Turner, Lucerne by Moonlight at the British Museum, London (note 1). Given that it is widely considered to be one of the most important of a great late series of Swiss subjects from the … Continue reading Turner in Switzerland #2:Lucerne by Moonlight