Joseph Mallord William Turner

Figure Studies and Coastline at Ostend and Mariakerke


Not on display
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 118 x 78 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXVI 175 a

Catalogue entry

Here Turner has filled the page with cursory sketches of figures, boats, and the coastline at and to the west of Ostend. All the drawings, with the exception of two of the uppermost, have been executed with the sketchbook turned upside down. From some of the inscriptions Turner has roughly dashed off, it seems that the artist has sketched profiles of both the city of Ostend and the neighbouring towns of Middelkerke and Mariakerke, inscribed ‘mkirke’ and ‘Marinkirke’ by the artist. Turner has recorded the church at Middelkerke (dedicated to St Willibrord) and that at Mariakerke: the Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-ter-Duinenkerk, or Our Lady of the Dunes, inscribed by Turner as ‘Duikirke’. Mariakerke’s church references the dunes and polders which make up some of the landscape of this part of Flanders.
The figure sketches show a female dressed in a traditional ‘Light Red Cap’ and two local men, one wearing ‘Black and Green’ and the other a ‘Red [?Smock]’. A windmill and a group of figures have also been recorded.
Finberg catalogued this leaf and its recto Tate D19901; Turner Bequest CCXVI 175 as ‘Missing’ in his 1909 Inventory.1

Alice Rylance-Watson
June 2014

Finberg 1909, vol.II, p.676.

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