Joseph Mallord William Turner

Mont Saint-Michel, Normandy

1826

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 116 × 182 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D24106
Turner Bequest CCLV 17

Display caption

Turner arrived back in London from Italy in February 1829 and was immediately hopeful of travelling south again that year. However, this was not to be. Instead in August he travelled up the Seine to Paris, before heading along the coast of Normandy and returning via the Channel Islands. This tour also included Mont St Michel, a granite island lying in the estuary between Granville and St Malo.

Gallery label, January 1991

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Catalogue entry

Turner filled the centre of this page with a depiction of Mont Saint-Michel, situated off the coast of Normandy. The folio may not always have been attached to this sketchbook (see Technical Notes) and is the only depiction of this island fortress in its pages which is otherwise mainly devoted to the city of Rouen.
Technical Notes:
This page was not counted as part of this sketchbook at the time of the scheduling process. However, in his 1909 Inventory of the Turner Bequest, A. J. Finberg numbered the page within the sequence of the rest of the volume.1 Rather than being bound into the sketchbook, the sheet was attached to folio 16 verso near the gutter. The numbered inscriptions on both sides of the page indicate that it was associated with the sketchbook before it was attached to it.
1
A.J. Finberg, A Complete Inventory of the Drawings of the Turner Bequest, London 1909, vol.II, p.776.
Verso:
Pencil notes reading ‘St M [...] Brittany’, ‘CCLV . 17’ twice. Red ink note reading ‘57.A.5’. Vestiges of light-blue paper in each corner of the page.

John Chu
July 2015

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