Joseph Mallord William Turner

Fishermen on the Look-Out

c.1830–5

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Chalk, gouache and watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 137 x 196 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D24763
Turner Bequest CCLIX 198

Catalogue entry

This study shows fishermen in characteristic sou’wester hats on a small quay or pier, looking out to sea with telescopes in the direction of a boat under full sail; there is gear including what may be a wicker lobster pot and floats in the foreground. The lively colour and handling, praised by John Ruskin for its ‘exquisite purity and tenderness of hue’, is comparable with that in Tate D24592 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 27), a contrasting scene of fishermen resting around a beached boat.
See the Introduction for other examples. The dating of c.1835–40 assigned to this sheet for recent exhibitions has been retained, although others may be from as early as 1826.
Technical notes:
The centre of the skeet is somewhat faded from prolonged display in the nineteenth century.
Verso:
Blank

Matthew Imms
December 2015

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