Joseph Mallord William Turner

Inscription by Turner: A List of Royal Academy Exhibits

1819

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

Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 119 x 87 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D13758
Turner Bequest CLXIX 4 a

Catalogue entry

With the page turned vertically, Turner made the following notes at the top left:
      [?Right] under the Line 
      Calcott.      1 
      Turner.       2 
      Wilkie        1 
      Mulready      1 
      Bone          1 
The list is a tally of exhibits at the 1819 Royal Academy exhibition, including Turner’s own. The relevant entries in the published catalogue are as follows:
86 Rotterdam – – A.W. Callcott, R.A.
136 Entrance of the Meuse: Orange-merchant on the Bar, going to pieces; Brill Church bearing S.E. by S., Masensluys E. by S. – J.M.W. Turner, R.A.
206 England: Richmond Hill, on the Prince Regent’s Birthday – – J.M.W. Turner, R.A.
153 The Penny Wedding – – D. Wilkie, R.A.
143 Lending a bite – W. Mulready, R.A.
502 A frame containing three pictures in enamel, viz. the Earl of Suffolk, after Sir Thos. Lawrence, R.A.; lady and child, after a picture in the possession of Lord Somerville; and the late John Clements, Esq. after M.A. Shee, Esq. R.A. – H. Bone, R.A.1
Turner’s Meuse and Richmond Hill views are both Turner Bequest works at Tate (N00501, N00502 respectively).2 Rotterdam by Augustus Wall Callcott (1779–1844) is in a private collection3 as is Lending a Bite by William Mulready (1786–1863), a genre scene of a boy reluctantly sharing an apple;4 both were painted for Earl Grey. The Penny Wedding by David Wilkie (1785–1841) was painted for George IV and remains in the Royal Collection.5 Henry Bone (1755–1834) was a miniaturist and enamel painter who, as shown by these examples, copied from eminent contemporaries.
All these Royal Academicians were colleagues, friends or artistic rivals of Turner’s to varying degrees. David Blayney Brown has suggested that Turner’s Dort, or Dordrecht, the Dort Packet-Boat from Rotterdam Becalmed, exhibited at the Academy the previous year (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven),6 may have been titled as a punning comment on the slow progress of Callcott’s Rotterdam, commissioned by Earl Grey in 1816 and finally shown in 1819.7
There are related notes and diagrams on folio 6 recto and verso (D13761, D13762); for other Royal Academy notes in this sketchbook, see under the recto of the present leaf (D13757).

Matthew Imms
September 2013

1
The Exhibition of the Royal Academy, M.DCCCXIX. The Fifty-First, exhibition catalogue, Royal Academy, London, 1819, pp.9, 10, 13, 11, 11 and 26 respectively.
2
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, pp.105–6 no.139, Pl.143 (colour) and pp.106–7 no.140, Pl.145 (colour) respectively.
3
David Blayney Brown, Augustus Wall Callcott, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1981, pp.81–2 no.17, reproduced.
4
Details given in the entry for the related oil Giving a Bite in Ronald Parkinson, Victoria & Albert Museum: Catalogue of British Oil Paintings 1820–1860, London 1990, p.200.
5
Entry for the work, The Royal Collection, accessed 18 January 2010, http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/egallery/object.asp?maker=12705&object=405536&row=1.
6
Butlin and Joll 1984, pp.102–4 no.137, Pl.140 (colour).
7
See ibid., p.103.

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