Joseph Mallord William Turner

?Birmingham, with a Canal in the Foreground

1830

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 78 x 110 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D22411
Turner Bequest CCXL 47

Catalogue entry

As part of unpublished Turner research informed by local knowledge, Dr Bernard Richards1 hesitated to concur with previous commentators that this is a Dudley view. The apparent presence of a tall dome on the skyline at the centre would suggest that the subject may be Birmingham (the dome being that of St Philips Church, later Birmingham Cathedral), despite falling between various identified Dudley views. Folio 45 recto (D22407) may show Birmingham and 49 recto (D22415) certainly does. The boat with figures at the centre may be a barge, possibly on the Birmingham and Worcester Canal; compare the views in the contemporary Kenilworth sketchbook, for example Tate D21997 (Turner Bequest CCXXXVIII 13a).
For other views of Birmingham, see under folio 3 recto (D22327); and for Dudley, see under folio 39 recto (D22395).

Matthew Imms
August 2013

1
Conversation with the author, 14 May 2013.

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