Joseph Mallord William Turner

Studies of Italian Figures

1819

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 161 x 101 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D15223
Turner Bequest CLXXX 63

Catalogue entry

This page contains quick studies of seven figures drawn from life. Although the rough nature of the sketches makes the details difficult to decipher, the men and women appear to be wearing elaborate, antiquated costumes, for example, the long soft cap and a ruff of the man in the top right-hand corner. This seems to have led Finberg to suggest that Turner was recording figures at a masquerade. The letters annotating the sketches almost certainly stand for colour notations, i.e ‘R’ indicates ‘Red’, ‘B’ for black or blue and ‘W’ for white.
Further figure studies within this sketchbook can be found on the inner front cover and on folios 6 verso, 14 verso, 15 verso, 33 verso, 69, 80, 80 verso, 82 and 82 verso (D40619, D15114, D15130, D15132, D15167, D15228, D15245, D15246, D15249 and D15250; Turner Bequest CLXXX 5a, 13a, 14a, 32a, 68, 79, 79a, 81 and 81a).
Verso:
Blank

Nicola Moorby
December 2009

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