Joseph Mallord William Turner

The Tour de Croy at Wimereuex Sketched from Ambleteuse


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite and watercolour on paper
Support: 239 × 335 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CCCLVII 9

Catalogue entry

As in the following and preceding two works as originally constituted in the sketchbook (D35392, D25393, D35395; Turner Bequest CCCLVII 7, 8, 10), Turner here attempts to catch the effect of a low sun reflected on the sea. The artist inscribed this sketch ‘Ambletuze’ [sic], although it more precisely represents the view from Ambleteuse back to Wimereux, several miles south back down the coast. Between a richly coloured sky and the green-blue washes of the sea can be seen the eighteenth-century Tour de Croy, ‘dropped in’ on the horizon with dark green paint. This defensive structure, built to repel the English during the Seven Years’ War, was located on a rocky reef at some distance off the mainland at Wimereux.1 Turner sketched this fort on two or three other occasions during this tour in the present sketchbook (D35387; Turner Bequest CCCLVII 2) and in the Boulogne sketchbook (Tate D35406, D35414; Turner Bequest CCCLVIII 4, 12).
Pierre-André Wimet, ‘Un vestige boulonnais de la Guerre de Sept ans – La tour de Croy, à Wimereux’, Bulletin de la Commission Départementale des Monuments Historiques du Pas-de-Calais, vol.6, no.1, 1935, pp.418–22.
Blank; the sheet was not available for inspection out of its frame at the time of cataloguing.

John Chu
December 2013

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