Joseph Mallord William Turner

View over Nant Peris towards Snowdon

1799

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Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 79 x 130 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D02023
Turner Bequest XLVI 19 a

Catalogue entry

A large colour study (Tate D03642; Turner Bequest LX a A), is evidently based on this sketch, although it appears to belong to the group of large watercolour studies that Turner made directly from the motif on his 1799 tour of Snowdonia. It is however quite possible that he jotted down the essential elements of the composition as a guide either before starting or during the execution of the larger work: he was clearly anxious to record the striking but evanescent effect of sunlight that is rapidly noted here, and which is splendidly realised in the watercolour, one of the most complete and powerful of the Snowdonia series. A rough sketch of the sun breaking through cloud is on folio 60 verso (D02090).
The viewpoint may be somewhere near Dinorwig, on the slopes of Elidir Fawr, north of Llyn Peris. Snowdon is the large central mass. The sketch on folio 20 recto opposite (D02024) appears to be a continuation of the view to the west. The artist Jeremy Yates has assisted in the identification of this subject.1 Compare the drawing of Snowdon from Beddgelert on folio 106 recto (D02151), which is related to other large watercolour (Tate D03643, D04178; Turner Bequest LX a B, LXX a).

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

1
Personal communication.

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