National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of The Evening of the Deluge Joseph Mallord William Turner (artist)
British, 1775 - 1851
The Evening of the Deluge, c. 1843
oil on canvas
overall: 76 x 76 cm (29 15/16 x 29 15/16 in.)
Timken Collection
1960.6.40
Not on View
From the Tour: Constable and Turner — British Landscapes of the Early 1800s
Object 10 of 11

Conservation Notes

The support is composed of two canvases, both of medium weight and plain woven; it has been lined. There are shallow diagonal grooves cutting across each corner at approximately 14.5 cm. from the edge; these were scored either in the ground or in the paint layers before the painting was finished. Although, as confirmed by x-radiographs, the original canvas has always remained square in format, it is clear that Turner did consider an octagonal shape for the design; but it is difficult to know now if the roughly painted corners were meant to be seen or to be covered. The ground is white, probably calcium carbonate, and thickly applied. The painting is executed in thick paint, applied with both brush and palette knife, which is covered with thick and thin glaze washes, often blended wet into wet, probably with some use of watercolor, creating the details of the design. The uppermost paint layers filling the corners outside the grooves are sketchily applied. Some of the impasto has been flattened during lining. There is one large, old, retouched loss above the tent; otherwise there are only a few scattered losses and little abrasion. The thick natural resin varnish has discolored yellow to a significant degree.

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