Joseph Mallord William Turner

Salisbury Cathedral: Studies of Sculpture in the Chapter House

c.1799

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Dimensions
Support: 150 x 121 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D02334
Turner Bequest XLIX 79 a

Catalogue entry

Inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, the figure groups in the upper portion of this page are the reliefs illustrating scenes from the Old Testament which occupy the spandrels of the arcade above the sedilia in Salisbury’s Chapter House. They include episodes from the story of Joseph and his brothers. Below are studies of individual capitals from the colonettes dividing the sedilia; see also folio 80 verso (D02336).
Turner referred to these studies when working on his watercolours of the Inside of the Chapter House of Salisbury Cathedral, exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1799 (Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester)1 and Chapter House, Salisbury, shown at the same venue in 1801 (Victoria and Albert Museum, London).2

Andrew Wilton
March 2013

1
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.321 no.199, pl.45.
2
Ibid., no.201, reproduced.

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