56357 St. Goarshausen
Footpath to Burg Katz, View of Burg Rheinfels
Turner spends the afternoon of 24th August 1817 exploring the area around St. Goarshausen. He clambers up to Burg Katz and from this vantage point makes the sketch which is later the basis for the watercolour he paints on his return to London. The main body of the painting is taken up by rocky crags and walls – an outlandish and striking compositional choice. The viewer’s gaze is drawn upstream to the brightly illuminated valley and Burg Rheinfels. The ruins of Burg Katz in the middle of the picture, which do not exist in this form, are another striking feature. Here Turner has placed a lone figure standing in an archway, in order to emphasize the proportions of the picture. The scene appears almost monochromatic with only a few yellow and brown hues. Today Burg Katz is privately owned and is not open to the public.