Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Iron Forges of Quint

c.1839

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

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Gouache, pen and ink and watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 139 x 191 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D24823
Turner Bequest CCLIX 258

Display caption

Although most of Turner's Mosel drawings depict historic towns and ruined castles, his subject matter in nos.50 and 51 is very different. No.50 shows the flourishing factories at Quint, handled with the bravado and brilliance such a theme deserved. No.51, based on a pencil sketch inscribed 'Napoleon passed here', employs a far softer palette and more delicate handling, perhaps chosen deliberately to show the unspoilt and peaceful countryside through which Napoleon and his armies had forced their way at the beginning of the century. In 1839 Turner did not, of course, see the temporary bridge of boats used by the French, but nevertheless imagined it very vividly.

Gallery label, August 2004

Catalogue entry

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