Joseph Mallord William Turner

Lecture Diagram: Building in Perspective with Vanishing Lines


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite and watercolour on paper
Support: 731 × 1028 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CXCV 138

Catalogue entry

Prepared in connection with his lectures as Professor of Perspective at the Royal Academy, Turner’s diagram is based on one by John Joshua Kirby (1716–74) in Dr Brook Taylor’s Method of Perspective Made Easy; both in Theory and Practice (London 1768, vol.II, pl.IX, fig.4). It appears related to the series of diagrams illustrating how to draw a house or rectangular object in perspective which Turner used for his history of techniques in Lecture 3 (Tate D17049–D17053).
Technical notes:
Peter Bower writes that the diagram is on two Elephant size sheets of Whatman paper glued together with a slight overlap. They were made by Finch and Thomas Robert Hollingworth, at Turkey Mill, Maidstone, Kent.1
Notes in Tate catalogue files.
Blank, save for an inscription by an unknown hand in pencil ‘132’ bottom left.

Andrea Fredericksen
June 2004

Supported by The Samuel H. Kress Foundation

Revised by David Blayney Brown
January 2012

Read full Catalogue entry

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