Joseph Mallord William Turner

Sailing Vessels on River Seine


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 107 × 156 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLIII 63 a

Catalogue entry

The page contains a sketch, drawn horizontally, of sailing boats on water with high hills behind. Finberg called it ‘Sailing vessels on river’,1 but the location has been further specified as a view of the Seine between Le Havre and Rouen.2 Preceding drawings in the sketchbook are of Jumièges, the following of river views, and then the town of Duclair, consistent with Turner travelling eastwards upriver and indicating that this sketch can be specified further to a view from the Seine between Jumièges and Duclair.
Art historian Ian Warrell notes that this drawing (as well as folio 64 recto opposite; D23824) formed the preliminary sketch3 for Turner’s later watercolour, The Banks of the Seine near Jumièges and Duclair, Normandy, c.1832 (Tate D24638; Turner Bequest CCLIX 73), and was also the source4 for another watercolour of about the same date, The Banks of the Seine near Jumièges and Duclair, Normandy (Tate D24774; Turner Bequest CCLIX 209). In this sketch, Turner captures the rolling, high hills and the shapes of the vessels in a few lines.

Caroline South
May 2017

Finberg 1909, II, p.770.
?Ian Warrell, ‘Turner on the Seine: Topographical Index’, c.1999, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain (printout in copy of Warrell 1999), p.5.
Warrell 1999, p.271 no.95.
Warrell 1999, p.271 no.96.

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