Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Derwent Valley with Gibside in the Distance; Hylton Dene; Details of Hylton Castle and Chapel


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 232 × 328 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLVI 8 a

Catalogue entry

The page appears to have been used first for the slight, distant view downstream of the Gibside estate to the south-west from the River Derwent near Winlaton Mill. Old Hollinside manor and the Column of British Liberty are barely indicated on the skyline towards the middle. There is a slightly more substantial version, made nearby, on the recto (D12272). Further studies of Gibside and the surrounding landscape are on folio 6 verso to folio 10 verso (D40723, D12265, D40724, D12270, D12271, D12266, D12267–D12268, D12269; CLVI 3 verso–4, [4 verso]–7, 7a, 5, 5a–6, 6a). See the introduction to the tour and the entry for folio 6 verso (D40723) for more on the history of the house and estate.
Although the Gibside view effectively occupies the whole page, it is partially eclipsed by the studies of Hylton Castle and its chapel from the east, isolated in the sky, as it were, towards the top right. These and the separate landscape at the top centre, showing the same side of the castle in the distance up Hylton Dene, are more deliberate than the very light Gibside sketch, suggesting that they were made later and that Turner had thus visited Gibside before travelling east to Hylton, both of which were owned by the Earl of Strathmore (see the introduction to the tour).
At the left of the upper sketch, the Wear Valley stretches away to the south-west towards Penshaw. The north bank of the river has been much developed, with housing and industrial estates and a dual carriageway, but Hylton Dene remains as open fields and woodland. There is a full-page view with the castle in the distance from a similar angle on folio 12 recto opposite (D12274; CLVI 9).
The castle has since lost its north and south wings and ground floor arcades, and the chapel is now without its tower and roof. Details of the buildings from the opposite side are recorded on folio 12 verso (D12275; CLVI 9a), opposite a view of them from the north-west on folio 13 recto (D12276; CLVI 10). See the entry for the latter and the introduction to the tour for more on the history of the site.

Matthew Imms
February 2010

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