Joseph Mallord William Turner

East Cowes Castle from the East


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Chalk and pen and ink on paper
Support: 141 × 193 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLX 28

Catalogue entry

East Cowes Castle is shown to the west, with the square tower at the eastern corner of the main block at the centre all but eclipsing the taller octagonal tower beyond; below to the right is the entrance porch. Tate D20831 (Turner Bequest CCXXVII a 28) shows a similar aspect. The tower and turret at the left of the present drawing does not correspond to the known layout,1 and may have been noted from another viewpoint.
Like several others in the present subsection, this drawing was categorised in Finberg’s 1909 Inventory in one of the sections of works on blue paper ‘mostly connected with “French Rivers”’.2 It is among dozens of blue paper studies made in and around East Cowes Castle, presumably during the same visit. For more on the various aspects of the house (demolished in about 1950), and its lost grounds as depicted by Turner, see the Introduction to this subsection.
See ‘Ground-floor plan of East Cowes Castle’ in Michael Mansbridge, John Nash: A Complete Catalogue, Oxford 1991, p.86.
See Finberg 1909, II, pp.806–13, CCLX, ‘Pencil and ink on blue paper: mostly connected with “French Rivers” series’, c.1830; but see Warrell 1989, p.148 and Warrell 1999, pp.30, 253 note 84, linking this work to the Isle of Wight.
Technical notes:
There is fading to the centre from prolonged exposure when the sheet was on display.
Blank; inscribed in pencil ‘D.24864’ bottom left and ‘CCLX.28’ bottom right. There is white paper or tape adhering around the edges, dating from the lengthy period when the sheet was mounted and displayed.

Matthew Imms
November 2015

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