Prepared in connection with his lectures as Professor of Perspective at the Royal Academy, Turner’s diagram is based on a plate from Dr Brook Taylor’s Method of Perspective Made Easy; both in Theory and Practice: in Two Books (London 1768, vol.II, pl.II, fig.2) by John Joshua Kirby (1716–74). Kirby’s illustration appeared in a chapter on practical perspective.1 As well as this diagram, Turner drew another featuring the same figure along with another (fig.4) from Kirby (Tate D16975; Turner Bequest CXCV 6). The diagram corresponds to a section in Turner’s lecture notes containing discussion of a wide variety of methods of perspective, which Maurice Davies considers to be the late, extended version of Turner’s history of techniques.2
Blank, save for an inscription by an unknown hand in pencil ‘39’.
Supported by The Samuel H. Kress Foundation