Joseph Mallord William Turner

Horses and a Cart, with Figures, in a Sandy Cutting Leading to the Sea, with the Rigging of Sailing Vessels beyond Buildings

1796–7

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

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Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Gouache, graphite and watercolour on paper
Dimensions
Support: 113 x 93 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D01235
Turner Bequest XXXVII 118

Catalogue entry

The composition continues across folio 59 recto opposite (D01236; Turner Bequest XXXVII 119). The sandy chine is typical of the ancient routes that cut through the low cliffs of Kent and Sussex to their beaches. There is a discrepancy between the size of the sails and ships’ rigging seen behind the buildings at the left and the apparent distance of the water and other shipping on the right of this composition. It may be that Turner has conflated two quite different scenes into one.

Andrew Wilton
September 2012

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