Charles Brooking

A British Man of War Firing a Salute

c.1750–9

On display at Tate Britain

Medium
Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions
Support: 1022 x 1480 mm
frame: 1193 x 1660 x 105 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Bequeathed by Mrs K.M.E. Morris 1956
Reference
T00115

Display caption

British marine painting developed at the end of the 17th century in response to Britain’s mercantile and imperial expansion. Brooking was a major figure in this development. Unlike many of his contemporaries, he preferred generalised depictions of different types of ship, rather than documentary representations of particular places or events. This scene may, therefore, be imagined rather than actual. It was said that Brooking ‘had been much to sea’. This is reflected in his obvious knowledge of sailing in different weather conditions, and of the details of ships, sails and rigging.

Gallery label, February 2016

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