Rendered with agile line, here Turner depicts the valley of the River Aire and Kirkstall Abbey, a ruined Cistercian monastery established in 1152. This sketch is associated with Turner’s watercolour of Kirkstall Abbey produced for W.B. Cooke’s Rivers of England series (Tate D18146; Turner Bequest CCVIII M and Tate impressions T04810, T04811, T06371).1 See also Tate D18390; Turner Bequest CCX 48.
For more information see Alice Rylance-Watson, ‘Kirkstall Abbey, on the River Aire 1824 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, August 2014, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-kirkstall-abbey-on-the-river-aire-r1146210.