J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Oxford from the South-West ?1787-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Oxford from the South-West ?1787–8
Turner Bequest III B
Pencil, watercolour and pen and black ink with ruled washline border, inner dimensions 318 x 466 mm, on white wove paper 361 x 520 mm
Inscribed by Turner in pen and brown ink ‘A View of the CITY of OXFORD’ in border, bottom centre
Stamped in black ‘III B’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Youngblood, with some justification, considers that the style of this sheet is consistent with that of Turner’s early Margate drawings.1 Like those drawings it was, as Harrison observes, presumably made from sketches on the spot, but is very unlikely to have been completed out of doors. The buildings of the city are huddled together to the right of the composition, with the towers of St Giles’s and Magdalen (at the extreme right) conspicuous, along with the spire of Christ Church Cathedral and the dome of the Radcliffe Camera. Compare the distant view of Oxford dated 1789 (Tate D00046; Turner Bequest III A).
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.300 nos.1–4, reproduced (3 and 4), pls.1, 2 (1 and 2 respectively), as ?1784.

Andrew Wilton
April 2012

How to cite

Andrew Wilton, ‘Oxford from the South-West ?1787–8 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, April 2012, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2012, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-oxford-from-the-south-west-r1140095, accessed 22 November 2017.