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The picturesque simplicity of this watercolour has much in common with some of the sketches Turner made on the river Thames. Its subject is unknown, but the footbridge resembles a bridge in a later sketch of Berry Pomeroy Castle in south Devon.

 

The dry brush used to paint the foliage creates the effect of light just breaking through the trees. Dozens of fingerprints can be seen on this sheet, especially around the base of the group of trees
at the right. Turner often moved and blended the paint with his fingers.

 

August 2004