Joseph Mallord William Turner

East Cowes Castle from the South


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

Pen and ink on paper
Support: 140 x 192 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856

Catalogue entry

This very rapid and summary drawing is not mentioned in Finberg’s 1909 Inventory.1 It shows East Cowes Castle, but whether from the slopes to its south-east, looking across the valley of the River Medina towards Cowes (see under Tate D20704; Turner Bequest CCXXVII a 1), with trees lightly indicated, or from the banks of the river below, looking north-east to the house beyond the masts of boats, is a moot point. There is a more substantial drawing looking from the house itself on the recto (D24862; CCLX 26).
Like several others in the present subsection, this drawing was categorised in Finberg’s 1909 Inventory in one of the sections of works on blue paper ‘mostly connected with “French Rivers”’.2 It is among dozens of blue paper studies made in and around East Cowes Castle, presumably during the same visit. For more on the various aspects of the house (demolished in about 1950), and its lost grounds as depicted by Turner, see the Introduction to this subsection.

Matthew Imms
November 2015

See A.J. Finberg, A Complete Inventory of the Drawings of the Turner Bequest, London 1909, vol.II, p.807.
See Ibid., pp.806–13, CCLX, ‘Pencil and ink on blue paper: mostly connected with “French Rivers” series’, c.1830; see also Ian Warrell, Turner on the Seine, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1999, pp.30, 253 note 84.

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