Artwork - Fire in the Palace of Westminster, 18th October 1834 [sic]

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  • Title: Fire in the Palace of Westminster, 18th October 1834 [sic]
  • Artist: Mr Hercules Brabazon Brabazon
  • After original by: Joseph Mallord William Turner
  • Medium: Watercolour
  • Categories: Buildings
  • Catalogue number: WOA 273
  • Description: Hercules Brabazon Brabazon\'s watercolour showing the fire that destroyed the Houses of Parliament in 1834 is a copy of an oil painting by J.M.W. Turner now in the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

    Turner\'s view was taken from the upper floors of a wharf in Stangate on the Lambeth bank of the Thames. The view from the river was particularly spectacular and the fire and attracted a number of artists. At least 44 (including Turner and Constable) are known to have painted the catastrophe itself or the ruins of the ancient building it left behind. "I never miss an accident", said Turner.

    Although Turner\'s two monumental oil paintings are now in American collections, the Parliamentary Art Collection holds paintings and sketches by many other artists. In some cases these depictions are the only record we have of parts of the magnificent but degraded buildings of the old Houses of Parliament.
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