Joseph Mallord William Turner

Designs for an Arrangement of Curtains around Pictures


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 108 × 185 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CV 19 a

Catalogue entry

Curtains, perhaps at Tabley House, are drawn on folio 9 verso of the sketchbook (D06991; Turner Bequest CV 7a) and the swagged drapery shown in the top right of the present leaf is similar. Here, however, Turner shows a room with a sloped ceiling like his own London gallery in its later manifestation behind his house in Queen Anne Street West (see Introduction to the sketchbook). A similar room with pictures and drapery is sketched on folio 47 (D07044; Turner Bequest CV 43) and folio 46 verso (D07043; Turner Bequest CV 42a) shows a row of pictures along a wall, also with blinds or drapes. These hangings must be intended to protect them from glare from the roof lights.

David Blayney Brown
June 2010

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