Joseph Mallord William TurnerRecipes for Bodied Paint Media (Inscriptions by Turner) ?1808

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Artwork details

Artist
Title
Recipes for Bodied Paint Media (Inscriptions by Turner)
From Tabley No.3 Sketchbook
Turner Bequest CV
Date ?1808
MediumGraphite on paper
Dimensionssupport: 108 x 185 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D06995
Turner Bequest CV 10 a
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Catalogue entry

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 12 Verso:
Recipes for Bodied Paint Media (Inscriptions by Turner) ?1808
D06995
Turner Bequest CV 10a
Inscribed by Turner in pencil (see main catalogue entry), inverted, on white wove paper, 108 x 185 mm
 
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner’s inscriptions read:
12 oz. of Gum Mastick  
 5 oz of Gum A[rabic]   
  
12 oz. of Soft Water  
 4½ of G. Arabic  
 8 of Wax  
  
 4 oz. of G.A.   
 8 oz. of S. Water  
 2 of Mastick. Boiled and Beat | till it becomes a paste| then add 5 oz. of wax.   
 More water makes like Cream  
Joyce Townsend, Senior Conservation Scientist at Tate, identifies these recipes as being for bodied paint media that would be added to oil paint on the palette: ‘They would give a somewhat limp impasto, but would be good for clouds. Megilps give similar effects.’ She adds that the last two recipes would fit results from her analyses of Turner’s materials but that in the first, gum arabic would not always be detectable by analysis, so it is harder to prove whether he used it.

David Blayney Brown
June 2010

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