Joseph Mallord William Turner

Sketch of a Bank, with Gipsies

? exhibited 1809

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Oil paint on canvas
Support: 613 x 838 mm
frame: 967 x 1180 x 133 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856

Display caption

Probably the picture of this title was first shown in Turner's Gallery in 1809. In its small size, sketchy effect and focus on rough and untidy landscape features in conditions of contrasted light, it shows Turner's engagement with the aesthetic of the 'Picturesque'. This was currently fashionable with connoisseurs.

Gallery label, August 2004

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Catalogue entry

82. [N00467] Sketch of a Bank, with Gipsies Exh. 1809?

Canvas, 24 1/2 × 33 (61·5 × 84)
Coll. Turner Bequest 1856 (?89, ‘Cows on a Hill’ 4'9 1/2" × 3'0 1/2"); transferred to the Tate Gallery 1910.

Exh. ?Turner's gallery 1809 (1); Tate Gallery 1931 (41); Amsterdam, Berne, Paris, Brussels, Liege (14), Venice and Rome (16) 1947–8; Arts Council tour 1952 (8); Tate Gallery 1973–4 (205, repr.).

Engr. Etched by Turner for the Liber Studiorum R.91, but not published (two impressions repr. Finberg 1924, pp. 364–5).

Lit. Thornbury 1862, i, p. 262; 1877, p. 418; Armstrong 1902, p. 228; MacColl 1920, p. 4; Finberg 1924, p. 365, repr. p. 364; Rothenstein and Butlin 1964, p. 27; Gage 1965, p. 79; Lindsay 1966, p. 106.

Probably the work of this title exhibited at Turner's gallery in 1809. Perhaps in part based on sketches in the ‘Cows’ sketchbook (LXII, especially pp. 10 and 13 for the left-hand cow).

Published in:
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984


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