Joseph Mallord William Turner

Galashiels and Gala Hill


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 111 × 181 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXVIII 58 a

Catalogue entry

Turner passed through Galashiels twice on 3 October 1834. His first set of sketches of the town (folios 42 verso–46 verso; D26177–D26185) was made when he arrived from Selkirk to the south (folio 40; D26172). According to the order of sketches in this book, he then followed the Gala Water to the River Tweed and visited Abbotsford and its estate (folio 52; D26197) on his way to Melrose (folio 53; D26198). A sketch on folio 57 verso (D26207) indicates that he crossed the Tweed at Darnick Bridge, and then followed the road west to Galashiels on his way to Edinburgh. His second set of sketches of the town is on folios 58 verso–59 verso (D26209–D26211) and perhaps folio 61 (D26213).
This sketch looks east along the Gala Water to the town, with Gala Hill rising above it. Beneath the hill is the tower of the Old Parish Church, with the chimney of one of the town’s many woollen mills to the right. Turner made a similar sketch on folio 45 verso (D26183) on his earlier visit to the town.
There is an oval brown stain in the bottom left corner of this page.

Thomas Ardill
January 2011

Read full Catalogue entry


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