Joseph Mallord William Turner

A Watermill at Stourton


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

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Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite and watercolour on paper
Support: 260 × 381 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest XXVII N

Catalogue entry

Turner probably drew this mill on an early visit to Sir Richard Colt Hoare (1758–1838) at Stourhead, Wiltshire. His notes on ‘Order’d Drawings’ and studies at Salisbury in the Isle of Wight sketchbook (Tate D41250; and Tate D00423–D00426, D00428; Turner Bequest XXIV 16–19, 21), indicate that he was already working on commissions for Colt Hoare in 1795, and the style of this study is consistent with a similar date.
Inscribed by Turner in pencil ‘108 Stourton’; and in a later hand ‘19’; stamped in brown ink with Turner Bequest monogram. The inscription seems to have been added by Turner at a later date, probably about 1800. Compare the titles numbered ‘110’ and ‘109’ on the versos of two watercolour studies in the South Wales sketchbook (respectively Tate D00656, D00657; Turner Bequest XXVI 94, 95). Those studies date from 1798, but again the inscriptions appear to be slightly later.

Andrew Wilton
April 2012

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