Joseph Mallord William Turner

Windsor Castle from near Eton College, with a Willow Tree

c.1827

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

Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 112 x 192 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D20609
Turner Bequest CCXXVI 9 a

Catalogue entry

Like those on folios 6 recto and verso and 7 recto (D20604–D20606), this sketch shows Windsor Castle to the south-east beyond trees beside the River Thames in the vicinity of Eton College. A tortuously twisted willow tree dominates the foreground, while Turner has made a written note of swans beyond, calling to mind the bucolic Thames sketches he had made around Isleworth in 1805, where grand buildings act as a backdrop to the river’s flora and fauna; see for example Tate D04163 (Turner Bequest LXX L). Turner’s note of them near the royal residence at Windsor is appropriate given the Monarchy’s traditional ownership rights over Thames swans, exercised through the annual census depicted in the 1915–19 painting Swan Upping at Cookham (Tate T00525) by Stanley Spencer (1891–1959).
For other views in the area and further discussion see under folio 2 recto (D20598).

Matthew Imms
November 2015

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