Joseph Mallord William Turner

?East Wear Bay, Folkestone

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 x 187 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D17213
Turner Bequest CXCVIII 4 a

Catalogue entry

Composed with the page inverted relative to the foliation of the sketchbook, these drawings appear to chart the continuation of a boat trip around the southern coast of Kent begun two pages previously on folio 3 recto (D17211).1 The towering height of the cliffs fill the page and gestural, erratic lines cascade down in an indication of jagged rocks.
There are two additional sketches here, made with the page turned vertically. The topmost of these is extremely brief, and amounts to an abbreviated impression of a particular cliff in profile. Eric Shanes has speculated whether the second of these vertical sketches, rendered in more detail and elaborating on the topography of the local coastline, might be a view of East Wear Bay in Folkestone.2 He relates it to one of a group of ‘colour beginnings’, titled Cliffs near Dieppe (Tate D25425; Turner Bequest CCLXIII 302) along with another, later cliff view in the present sketchbook, on folio 33 verso (D17263).3
1
Finberg 1909, I, p.604.
2
Shanes 1997, p.94 appendix I under ‘Cliffs’.
3
Ibid.
Technical notes:
The yellow wash applied to the edges of the sketchbook is particularly evident here, having bled inwards slightly.

Maud Whatley
January 2016

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