Joseph Mallord William Turner

?The Tipton Entrance to the Dudley Canal Tunnel


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

Graphite on paper
Support: 78 x 110 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXL 39 a

Catalogue entry

As part of unpublished Turner research informed by local knowledge, Dr Bernard Richards has suggested that this rough sketch, inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, shows the Tipton entrance to the Dudley Canal tunnel which runs for about two miles south-west under Dudley. The tunnel entrance is now part of the Black Country Living Museum, but the stark, open landscape shown here is difficult to relate to specific features today, with the hill running south to Dudley Castle dense with trees. The tower on the skyline may be the ruined castle keep,1 or possibly St Andrew’s Church, Netherton, further south; compare folios 43 verso and 46 recto (D22404, D22409). Turner drew the church in the contemporary Kenilworth sketchbook (Tate D22021; Turner Bequest CCXXXVIII 25a).
There is a similar view on folio 40 recto opposite (D22397). For other views of Dudley, see under the recto (D22395).
Conversation with the author, 14 May 2013.
Technical notes:
This leaf is affected by the extensive pale brown, mottled staining which extends throughout this particular gathering (folios 31–42; D22379–D22402) and also folios 30 and 43 recto and verso (D22377, D22378, D22403, D22404), as discussed in the Technical notes to the sketchbook’s Introduction.

Matthew Imms
August 2013

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