Joseph Mallord William Turner

Distant View of Spa

1839

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 94 × 154 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D28082
Turner Bequest CCLXXXVII 21

Catalogue entry

Rendered with loose handling, Turner has sketched a view of the hilly topography surrounding Spa in Belgium: the town can be seen nestled in the distant valley where the Ardennes ridges dip. Trees and gently sloping hillsides have been suggested, Turner annotating part of the land with the word ‘Corn’ to note the local crop. At the bottom right of the sheet he has inscribed the town’s name, ‘Spa’. The municipality has historically been a site for the taking of mineral waters believed to posses natural healing and health-giving properties.
For other views of Spa in this sketchbook see Tate D28078, D28083, D28086–D28092, D28107–D28116; Turner Bequest CCLXXXVII 19, 21a, 23–6, 34a–39a.

Alice Rylance-Watson
April 2013

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