Joseph Mallord William Turner

?St Margaret’s Bay


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 187 x 113 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CXCVIII 65

Catalogue entry

Made with the page turned vertically, this drawing continues a series of several similar studies in this portion of the sketchbook which seem to be studies made at St Margaret’s Bay, near Dover. These can be found on consecutive pages between folio 64 recto and folio 66 verso, and on the present leaf (D17314–D17315, D17317–D17319). St Margaret’s seems also to feature on folios 35 verso and 69 recto (D17267 and D17324).
In the present sketch, Turner describes jagged coastal cliffs viewed from below. Several chaotic, fluid lines at the base of the sheets of rock seem to denote waves lapping against the shore. The harsh shapes and absence of any view of land beyond the cliff formation particularly link this sketch with a drawing on the facing page, folio 64 verso (D17315) and another made two pages previously on folio 64 recto (D17314).
Technical notes:
As highlighted by Finberg, part of the page has been torn away and since made up with similar paper. 1 The dimensions of the surviving original page are 130 x 113 mm.

Maud Whatley
January 2016

Finberg 1909, I, p.606.

Read full Catalogue entry


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