This drawing may be a distant view of Margate according to Eric Shanes, although the absence of any identifying features makes it difficult to determine Turner’s exact representation.1
Turner has saturated the sheet with translucent layers of green-grey and blue wash, marking out a headland in very pale red. The pigments have merged and bled into each other forming evocative gradients. The foreground is rendered with vigorous dry brush-strokes of the same green-grey wash heightened with brown to suggest the churn and swell of the sea.
Shanes 1997, p.99 Appendix I ‘Margate’.
There is pronounced cockling on the back of the sheet. The paper has browned quite considerably in the indentations produced by the cockling.
Inscribed in pencil ‘CCLXIII–
120’ at top left.