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

Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 96 x 59 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D25689
Turner Bequest CCLXV 26 a

Catalogue entry

Turned to the right, this page contains a long inscription which is transcribed below.
Long [...]
?Later it went behind a ?cloud
sea went sunny and appeared to
make a hole of light in sky
the ?effect the appearance of a shaft on [...]
strike [...] then move [...] with
?changing tides
The accompanying sketch depicts low clouds lit from beneath by a setting or rising sun above a calm sea. The inscription provides a narrative of the changing effect of the sun as it went behind a cloud, giving the appearance of a ‘hole of light in [the] sky’ and sending a ‘shaft’ of light onto the sea. The same effect is seen in Turner’s painting, Rough Sea with Wreckage circa 1840–4 (Tate N01980).1
This sketch may be one of a sequence with folios 26 and 27 (D25688, D25690), which are dated 5 and 16 November (presumably 1831) respectively.
At the bottom of the page are a few lines continuing from the sketch on folio 27.

Thomas Ardill
September 2009

1
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, p.285 no.455.

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