The Castle of La Batiaz, Martigny, Switzerland

The Castle of La Batiaz, Martigny, Switzerland


William Callow, R.W.S. (1812-1908)
The Castle of La Batiaz, Martigny, Switzerland

Signed lower centre:
W. Callow
Watercolour over pencil heightened with bodycolour and gum arabic
30.8 by 42cm., 12 by 16 ½ in.

With the Fine Art Society, London, 1950s

This is likely to date from shortly after Callow's first tour of Switzerland and Germany, when he visited Martigny, in August 1838. Callow was living in Paris at the time and took a diligence from there, in the company of a Mr Forman, to Dijon before continuing to Geneva and up to Chamonix and Mont Blanc. He then proceeded to Aosta and the hospital of St Bernard at St Rémy from where he descended to Martigny (see
William Callow - an Autobiography, edited by H.M. Cundall, 1908, pp.67-71). He then continued east across Switzerland then north to Bonn from where he returned to Paris via Cologne and Brussels.

This watercolour is almost certainly a studio work based on on-the-spot sketches. Two such views of Martigny, both dated 22
nd August, are recorded - one in the Victoria and Albert Museum (see Jan Reynolds, William Callow R.W.S., 1980, ill. no.20) and the other with Spinks in the 1980s.