When Turner travelled up the Rhine into Switzerland in the summer months of 1841/42 and visited Zurich, his fame in the English art trade was based chiefly on his book illustrations and topographical series. Working from on-the-spot sketches, he produced so-called “sample studies” for private clients. The “Fete Day” is the second of the two Zurich panoramas that he produced in the 1840s, both depicting the local populace in the foreground drawn as if by magic to the lake and the light. It was painted in 1845 for the English collector W.G. Windus and has been in the possession of the Kunsthaus Zürich since 1976.