Joseph Mallord William Turner

Ships at Anchor and a Sailing Boat


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 100 × 74 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCVII 14 a

Catalogue entry

With the page turned vertically, there are quick studies on two registers here. At the top left are the profiles of two ships with their sails furled, and a study of a sailing boat, possibly passing a smaller craft, at the top right. Below to the right is a ship seen at anchor from the stern, with what seem to be masts to its left above rolling forms along the waterline, which might indicate a low, wooded shore or possibly smoke from a salute being fired. There are similar loose forms beside the ships at the top left; a series of dashes in line with the mast of the left-hand vessel may indicate bunting or signal flags, as seen on folio 15 recto opposite (D18017). For more on studies in this sketchbook relating to the regatta events at Cowes from late July 1827 onwards, see the sketchbook Introduction.

Matthew Imms
December 2014

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