Joseph Mallord William Turner

Buildings, with Hill Beyond

c.1821–2

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 113 × 187 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D17311
Turner Bequest CXCVIII 62 a

Catalogue entry

As identified by Finberg, here Turner produces a study of three buildings, behind which rises a more elevated section of land.1 The building at far left seems to be an incomplete repeat of the low structure delineated towards the centre of the page; both are comprised of a single storey punctuated by three windows and lined with oblong columns in the intervening spaces. The larger building situated between these two repetitive renderings appears to boast two storeys and a more elaborate, flayed roof, which fans out to encompass the extended walls on either side. At the front there is an arched doorway, somewhat characteristic of church architecture, and the overall design of the building is asymmetric. On the far right, a fragmented, sketched line indicates a diagonal barrier across the bottom corner of the page, and illegible markings elaborate on this towards the gutter.
At the top of the page the uneven level of the horizon is expressed using a lightly handled pencil line. This becomes jumbled and indicative of perhaps rocky topography towards the right hand side of the page. A tall, broad structure seems to extend up from this hillside, perhaps indicating the presence of a castle or church tower.

Maud Whatley
January 2016

1
Finberg 1909, I, p.606.

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