Extensive View of Windsor from the Thames

Louis Bélanger (1756 - 1816)

Watercolour on paper

  • About the work

    This meticulously painted view shows Windsor Castle and the surrounding buildings from across the River Thames. The distinctive turrets of the Round Tower of Windsor Castle and its connected buildings, set on the central mound, dominate the rest of the complex.

    A large (74 x 108 cm) gouache painting of ‘Windsor Castle, seen from the Eton side of the Thames’, signed by Louis Bélanger and dated 1796, was sold through Sotheby’s, London, in 2003. It shows the castle complex from a different point on the riverbank to this watercolour and was undoubtedly painted in the artist’s studio. This view may have been painted from life by the artist, as he stood on the riverbank.

    Windsor Castle was first built in this prime location, beside the river Thames and close to London, by William the Conqueror. Originally constructed in wood, it was rebuilt in stone in the 1170s, during the reign of Henry II, when the Round Tower and royal apartments were added.

  • About the artist
    Louis Bélanger travelled extensively through Europe and is best known for works he produced on the continent and in England. He was based in London for a time and exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1790 and 1797, showing just three works there in total. In the published listing of ‘Royal Academy Contributors and their Works’ he is described as ‘Painter to the Duke of Orleans’ and in 1790 his address is given as No. 2, Old Bond Street. By 1797 he had moved, although his new address is given simply as Knightsbridge. He was appointed painter to the Swedish court in Stockholm in 1798, where he remained until his death in 1816. Swedish painter Carl Johan Fahlcrantz (1774-1861) was his pupil.
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  • Details
    Title
    Extensive View of Windsor from the Thames
    Date
    Medium
    Watercolour on paper
    Dimensions
    height: 37.00 cm, width: 48.00 cm
    Acquisition
    Purchased from Appleby Bros, April 1973
    GAC number
    10472