Joseph Mallord William Turner Kirkstall Abbey: Distant View from the South-East, with the Valley of the Aire 1797

Artwork details

Artist
Title
Kirkstall Abbey: Distant View from the South-East, with the Valley of the Aire
From North of England Sketchbook
Turner Bequest XXXIV
Date 1797
Medium Graphite on paper
Dimensions Support: 210 x 270 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D00921
Turner Bequest XXXIV 15
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Catalogue entry

Drawn with the page turned horizontally, the view is taken from Kirkstall Hill. David Hill notes that the smoke in the left distance denotes Kirkstall Forge. This detail also appears in Thomas Girtin’s 1800 watercolour of the same view (British Museum, London; 1855–2–14–53) and Hill proposes that Girtin made use of Turner’s drawing for his own work, omitting and simplifying in a way that typifies the temperamental and creative differences between the two artists. The fact that both were involved in working for the Lascelles family at the end of the decade points to a strong possibility that the two old friends and rivals were in close touch, though Turner was notoriously reluctant to share his working processes with others.
For further studies of Kirkstall, see under folio 11 recto (D00916; Turner Bequest XXXIV 10a).
Verso:
Blank; stamped in brown ink with Turner Bequest monogram.

Andrew Wilton
January 2013

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