John Constable
View over a Valley, Probably Epsom Downs c.1806

Artwork details

John Constable 1776–1837
View over a Valley, Probably Epsom Downs
Date c.1806
Medium Graphite and watercolour on paper
Dimensions Support: 95 x 124 mm
Acquisition Purchased as part of the Oppé Collection with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund 1996
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

Before 1805, Constable had used watercolour only occasionally and then rather timidly. During the years 1805 and 1806, however, he produced a substantial number of more painterly and expressive watercolours. The immediate impetus behind his more enthusiastic adoption of the medium in 1805 may have been the first, highly successful exhibition of the Society of Painters in Watercolour held in London that year. This watercolour was formerly identified as a view near Dedham in Suffolk. However, it is now thought to be a detached, trimmed page from a sketchbook which Constable used on a visit to relations in Epsom in August 1806.

August 2004