Joseph Mallord William Turner

Lecture Diagram 30: Perspective Method for a Cube (after Samuel Marolois and Jean-François Niceron)

c.1810

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite and watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 672 x 998 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D17044
Turner Bequest CXCV 74

Display caption

Diagram 30 combines methods by Samuel Marolois, a mathematician and fortification designer, and Jean-François Niceron, a geometrical theorist.

For Marolois's technique, Turner directs his students to place the eye (E) at the center line (C) where it cuts the horizon line (H). Then draw the plan of the object (P) to be put into perspective. Where perpendicular lines meet the base line (B), mark vanishing lines to the eye. Now draw transfer lines from the plan to the base line and connect to a point (V) at the side. The places at which all these lines intersect form the bottom of the cube.

Gallery label, August 2004

Catalogue entry

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