Joseph Mallord William Turner

?A Curtained Bed, with a Figure or Figures

c.1834–6

Not on display

Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 79 × 101 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D28910
Turner Bequest CCXCI c 24

Catalogue entry

Inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, the very loosely defined setting appears to be a curtained bed,1 as so often in this book, with the dappled washes suggesting light falling on a pale figure or figures within. The dark shape at the bottom right seems to suggest the shadow of an approaching figure.
For a discussion of the improvisatory and often erotic nature of the watercolour studies making up most of this sketchbook, see the Introduction.
1
See Rosenberg 2007, pp.117, 127.
Technical notes:
The unaccessioned, blank recto is numbered in red ink ‘24’ and stamped ‘CCXCI(c) – 24’; it bears some watercolour offsetting from folio 23 verso (D28908), particularly near the gutter. There is some offsetting from the present page on the unaccessioned recto of folio 25 opposite (its verso being D28912).

Matthew Imms
May 2014

Read full Catalogue entry

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