Joseph Mallord William Turner

Bideford Bridge


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 90 × 152 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CXXXII 79

Catalogue entry

Eric Shanes has recognised the sketch on folio 66 recto (D09550) as a view of Barnstaple Bridge, with its sixteen arches over the River Taw (which Finberg misidentified as the twenty-four-arched bridge at nearby Bideford). The drawings in between, on folios 67 recto, 68 recto, 69 recto and 70 recto (D09551–D09554), noted by Finberg as the ‘same bridge’ (i.e. supposedly Bideford) are therefore also identifiable as of Barnstaple Bridge. However, the two drawings of a similar bridge on this page and folio 79 verso (D09565) do indeed, as Finberg suggested, show Bideford Bridge, on the River Torridge, as the latter is annotated ‘24’.1
For other views in the Bideford area, see folios 76 recto, 77 recto and 78 recto (D09561–D09563); a possible view on the Torridge some way inland is on folio 60 recto (D09544).
Shanes 1997, pp.59, 92 note 2 under no.40; for the watercolour, see p.58 no.39, reproduced (colour).
Technical notes:
There is some staining to the right-hand edge of the leaf.

Matthew Imms
June 2014

Read full Catalogue entry

You might like