Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Interior of the Library, Farnley Hall


Not on display

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Support: 111 × 185 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLIII 16

Catalogue entry

This is the right half of a double-page spread continued from D12021; Turner Bequest CLIII 15a, opposite, and extended further right on Tate D12023; Turner Bequest CLIII 17, following, recording the north, east and south walls of the Georgian library at Farnley Hall, added to the house by the architect John Carr of York. In this, the main part of the sketch, we see the door into the drawing room on the left, with a glimpse of a harp in the next room. Over the chimneypiece, flanked by bookcases framed with drapery, is Turner’s painting Shoeburyness Fishermen hailing a Whitstable Hoy (National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa)1 bought by Walter Fawkes after its exhibition at the Royal Academy in 1809. It is colloquially known as the ‘Red Cap’ on account of one of the fishermen holding such a garment aloft. The detail was no doubt added to harmonise the painting with the predominant colour scheme of the room. The red walls, upholstery and black and red carpet are noted in Turner’s inscriptions. No finished watercolour of this composition is recorded but an entry in the list on Tate D12013; Turner Bequest CLIII 11a of the present sketchbook ‘18 Library’, indicates at least the intention to produce something.
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, p.63 no.85 (pl.95).

David Hill
June 2009

Revised by David Blayney Brown
June 2013

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