Joseph Mallord William Turner

Four Figures Seated round a Camp Fire

1796–7

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Gouache, graphite and watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 93 × 113 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D01138
Turner Bequest XXXVII 21

Catalogue entry

Miklos Rajnai1 relates this study, made with the page turned horizontally, to a small oil painting of a gypsy encampment (Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge).2 That and a companion picture3 have been associated with an entry in the artist Joseph Farington’s diary for 30 October 1799: ‘Turner called. Has been in Kent painting from Beech Trees.’4 There seems little likelihood that the study catalogued here dates from so late in the decade, and there is no specific visual similarity to confirm a connection.

Andrew Wilton
September 2012

1
Rajnai 1983, p.59.
2
Butlin and Joll 1984, p.27 no.35a, pl.40 (colour).
3
Ibid., p.27 no.35b, pl.41 (colour).
4
Quoted ibid., p.26.

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