Joseph Mallord William Turner

Whalley: The Bridge, with the Abbey Beyond


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

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 225 x 329 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest XLV 35 a

Catalogue entry

This view was taken a few metres upstream of that on folio 34 verso (D01967). Turner chose not to include Whalley Bridge in any of his finished subjects, though he returned to it on a subsequent visit to the neighbourhood in 1808, when he made a fresh drawing in his Tabley No.1 sketchbook (Tate D06837; Turner Bequest CIII 8), and later executed an oil painting, shown at the Royal Academy in 1811 under the title Whalley Bridge and Abbey, Lancashire: Dyers Washing and Drying cloth (private collection, on loan to the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford);1 its first owner was Thomas Lister Parker (see the sketchbook’s introduction). The subject of the oil, in fact, barely affords a glimpse of the Abbey buildings between the arches of the bridge; here, they are fully visible, even if the site is foreshortened in this perspective. See also folios 44 recto and 45 recto (D01983, D01984; Turner Bequest XLV 43, 44).

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, pp.83–4 no.117, pl.124 (colour).

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