Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Cap de la Hève; River Seine from Le Havre


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 114 × 187 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCLII 21

Catalogue entry

Inverted in relation to the sketchbook as foliated, these drawings depict views in and around the port of Le Havre.1 While the top sketch depicts the view back inland from the mouth of Seine, the larger vista looks north-west from the quay area, past the lighthouse to the two distant lighthouses atop the Cap de la Hève. The dark forms towards the bottom left-hand corner appear to depict figures leaning over a wall. For examples of the watercolours of Le Havre’s harbour area that Turner worked up with a view to engraved reproduction around this time, see Tate D24698 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 133), D24699 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 134), and D24820 (Turner Bequest CCLIX 255). These culminated in two engravings in the 1834 volume of Turner’s Annual Tour: Wanderings by the Loire and Seine (1833–5; later reissued as Rivers of France); see Tate impressions T04699, T05594.

John Chu
April 2014

Ian Warrell, Turner on the Seine, exhibition catalogue, Tate Gallery, London 1999, pp.96 fig.59, 97

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