Joseph Mallord William Turner

Leeds from Beeston Hill


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In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 179 × 254 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CXXXIV 80

Catalogue entry

As has long been recognised,1 this is a brief continuation of the detailed view of Leeds looking north from Beeston Hill on folio 48 verso opposite (D09883; Turner Bequest CXXXIV 79), faithfully followed in Turner’s 1816 watercolour Leeds (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven).2 See the entry for D09883 for extensive discussion.
In the distance on the left here, continued from the opposite page, are the kilns, chimney and windmill of the Leeds Pottery.3 The last building, at the right-hand end of the panorama and exclude from the subsequent watercolour, is the 1790s Low Fold Mill in the Bank area of Leeds, one of the earliest cotton mills in the town and later a carpet factory.4
See Cook and Wedderburn 1904, pp.254, 633; see also Finberg 1909, I, p.383, Butlin, Wilton and Gage 1974, p.82, White 1977, p.77, Wilton 1979, p.362, Hawes 1982, p.200, Hawcroft 1983, p.[72], Daniels 1986, pp.10, 11, Chumbley and Warrell 1989, p.46.
Wilton 1979, p.362 no.544, reproduced.
Hill 2008, p.132.
Ibid., pp.135–6.
Technical notes:
The right-hand section (108 mm) of the original sheet is missing, and has been made good with slightly darker paper. The inscriptions are at the edge of the remnant of the original sheet. The drawing is continuous with D09883 opposite, and both were removed from the sketchbook, mounted and exhibited.
There is a broad, well-preserved margin to the right of the drawing and undamaged strips above and below which were protected by the mount, but the exposed area has darkened. At the head and foot of the margin are small repaired tears, presumably made when the drawing was detached from a backing sheet to be rebound. The sketchbook was mutilated in a similar way to provide an exhibitable one-and-half-page view of Bolton Abbey, now bound as folios 10 verso and 11 recto (D09885, D09887; Turner Bequest CXXXIV 81–82).
Blank. There are heavy glue stains at the top and bottom edges around the repaired tears.

Matthew Imms
July 2014

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