Joseph Mallord William Turner

Petworth House:Figures in the White Library, possibly Lord Egremont


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

Gouache and watercolour on paper
Support: 142 x 188 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXLIV 87

Display caption

These works are part of a large group
of studies produced during Turner's visit
to Petworth in 1827. This grand country house, to the south-west of London,
was the principal home of Lord Egremont. He was a wealthy patron of contemporary art, who allowed artists to use Petworth
as an open studio.


The vivid impressions preserved in Turner's drawings show the relaxed nature of social gatherings at the house. Some focus on the intimacies of the bedrooms. These suggest either that Turner overstepped the bounds of decency, or that he delighted in creating fantasies about his fellow guests.


Gallery label, September 2004