Joseph Mallord William Turner Study at Sea c.1820

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Artwork details

Title
Study at Sea
Date c.1820
Medium Watercolour on paper
Dimensions Support: 242 x 296 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D17194
Turner Bequest CXCVII D
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

Storms often feature as a dramatic and sublime component of Turner’s paintings. In these three watercolours, gathering storm clouds above a menacing sea provide the artist with the opportunity to experiment with contrasting areas of dark and light.

Turner has combined fluid washes with energetic brushstrokes to create a sense of perpetual movement and change in the weather. Each composition preserves a unity between the sky and the water, the energy or stillness of the waves mirroring or balancing the dynamic masses of the clouds.

July 2008

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