Joseph Mallord William Turner

A Wooded Landscape, with a Group of Rural Figures Leaning against a Wall, Perhaps in the Thames Valley

c.1823–4

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 111 x 190 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D17827
Turner Bequest CCIV 38 a

Catalogue entry

Inverted relative to the sketchbook’s foliation, this study focuses on a group of at least eight men, most of whom are leaning or sitting on a low wall in a wooded valley setting. Despite the rapidity of the sketch, the economical details appear to indicate at least one wearing a smock, suggesting that they are rural labourers; perhaps they are relaxing after a day’s work, as Turner’s colour notes above them evoke a vivid sunset sky. The setting is likely to be the Thames Valley (see under folio 2 recto; D17775); for other sky studies, see the entry for the inside of the front cover (D40982).

Matthew Imms
November 2014

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