Caruso St John Architects

2003–2004
Location: London, UK
Client: Tate
Project Status: Exhibition Design

This exhibition in the Linbury Galleries on the ground floor of Tate Britain explored the substantial influence that Venice exerted on the life and work of Turner. It showed for the first time a large number of the watercolours executed by the artist on his two visits to the city, alongside large scale oil paintings by Turner and by his contemporaries and influences.

The exhibition design sought to provide a place for the numerous works on paper, allowing them to be enjoyed individually while simultaneously presenting them as a group with a presence akin to that of oil paintings. These smaller works were installed onto specially designed oak furniture and timber panelling applied to some of the walls. Oils were hung directly onto the painted walls. The lighting of the exhibition was even and light, trying to evoke the feeling of a studio rather than a nineteenth-century gallery.