Joseph Mallord William Turner

Loch Achray and Ben Venue


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 125 × 201 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLXX 53 a

Catalogue entry

The two sketches on this page are of Loch Achray, as indicated by Turner’s inscription. The main sketch is close in composition and viewpoint to the drawing on folio 49 (D26532) that formed the basis of Turner’s watercolour Loch Achray circa 1832 (Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection),1 engraved as the vignette illustration to the eighth volume of Sir Walter Scott’s Poetical Works: The Lady of the Lake.
The view is from the north side of the loch at the west end, and looks across the loch to the wooded hills of the Trossachs with Ben Venue beyond. Although this sketch is restricted to outlines, the shape of Ben Venue and its elevated altitude are closer to its depiction in the watercolour than folio 49.
The small, boxed-off sketch at the bottom right of the page probably shows the view east down the loch, as in the small sketch at the bottom of folio 50 verso (D26535).

Thomas Ardill
October 2009

Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.429 no.1085; the sketch was identified by David Wallace-Hadrill and Janet Carolan, ‘Turner Round the Clyde and in Islay – 1831’, 1991, Tate catalogue files, folio 4.

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