Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Moselle Front at Koblenz, Looking Downstream to the Spires of St Castor’s Church, with Sailing Craft


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

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Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 78 × 118 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCXVI 136 a

Catalogue entry

In this carefully executed study, Turner records the various boats, river barges and other craft docked at the quayside at Koblenz. The drawing was probably taken in the same sitting as those on the previous and subsequent folios (Tate D19822, D19824; Turner Bequest CCXVI 136, 137), though this view shows the Moselle from a vantage point slightly further downstream than CCXVI 136. The twin towers of the Basilica of St Kastor can be seen in the distance at right, conspicuous by the striking rhomboid shapes of their Rhenish helm spires (see also Tate D12782, D12807; Turner Bequest CLX 42a, 55).
More sketches of Koblenz can be found in this book on Tate D19818–D19822, D19825–D19830; Turner Bequest CCXVI 134–136, 137a–140. Earlier sketches of the city include: Tate D12781–D12783, D12803–D12809, D12893–D12903; Turner Bequest CLX 42–43, 53–56, CLXI 6a–12. See also Turner’s 1839 drawings of Koblenz on: Tate D28302–D28303, D28351–D28356, D28444–D28447, D28529–D28536, D28603–D28609, D26613–D28614; Turner Bequest CCLXXXIX 6a–7, CCXC 1–3a, 47a–49, 87a–91, CCXCI 34a–37a, 39a–40.

Alice Rylance-Watson
June 2014

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