Joseph Mallord William Turner

?A Figure on a Beach or a Sailing Boat, below a Crescent Moon

c.1826–40

View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Medium
Gouache on paper
Dimensions
Support: 140 x 189 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D24621
Turner Bequest CCLIX 56

Catalogue entry

This extremely slight study appears to juxtapose a high, waxing crescent moon with what may be a figure on a beach or a sail off shore, evoked by a barely modulated vertical stroke of pinkish gouache. There seem to be traces of more white, which may indicate that further elements have faded, assuming they are not fortuitous. For finished compositions with near-deserted shore scenes beneath the moon, see the Introduction.
Verso:
Blank; inscribed by John Ruskin in pencil ‘311 | O’ bottom right; inscribed in pencil ‘54–68’ top left; inscribed in pencil ‘D24621’ bottom centre. There is a border of white paper or tape, indicating that the sheet was formerly mounted.

Matthew Imms
December 2015

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