Joseph Mallord William Turner

?Caernarfon Castle


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Watercolour on paper
Support: 345 × 483 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXIII 9

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The indistinctness of the building depicted renders its identification difficult, but it could be Caernarvon Castle as seen in evening light. Turner certainly represented that building in similar light conditions and colours around 1833 for the 'England and Wales' series of engravings, albeit from a nearer viewpoint. The size of the present design is that of an 'England and Wales' series drawing before trimming, which suggests that it was linked to that scheme, as a preparatory work at least. Turner's use of the large-scale diffusion of watercolour is particularly well represented in this work.

Gallery label, September 2004

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