Joseph Mallord William Turner

Study for a Sea Piece, with Small Boats in Choppy Water

c.1799–1805

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Chalk on paper
Dimensions
Support: 436 x 271 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D05001
Turner Bequest LXXXI 99

Display caption

This sketchbook contains studies in pencil, pen and ink and chalk for a number of Turner’s early exhibited marine oil paintings. The sketches draw on his imagination as well as recording Turner’s own experiences of being at sea.

In 1802, a brief lull in the Napoleonic Wars permitted travel to France and Turner was able to cross the Channel for the first time. Energetic drawings of waves and spray point to the arduous nature of sea travel at this time. On one page of the book he notes that rough seas ‘nearly swampt’ the passengers disembarking at Calais.

Gallery label, April 2005

Catalogue entry

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