Joseph Mallord William Turner

Three Landscapes, with Distant Buildings and Boats

c.1828–45

In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Artist
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Medium
Graphite on paper
Dimensions
Support: 365 x 225 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Reference
D34855
Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 367

Catalogue entry

There are three landscapes here, separated by horizontal pencil lines, the bottom one being inverted relative to the others. With silhouetted buildings, a low reflected sun and what appear to be tangles of masts, they are rapid permutations of the classical landscape and seaport motifs of Claude Lorrain, a consistent influence on Turner (see the Introduction to this subsection).
Tate D34851–D34856 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 363–368) are all on two sides of a quartered single sheet, as discussed in the technical notes; the other quarters were also mainly used for landscape studies, as described under D34851, where there is also a note on dating.
Technical notes:
Tate D34851–D34856 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 363–368) are all on two sides of a single sheet folded into quarters, with the watermark ‘John Hall | 1828’ exactly at the centre; each averages approximately 183 x 213 mm of the overall dimensions. Finberg listed them individually as ‘folded’,1 albeit without noting their all being on one sheet; once folded firmly into four, they were lightly folded twice more, leaving three parallel creases across each quarter.
D34851–D34854 (CCCXLIV 363–366) are on one side, at the top left, bottom left, top right and bottom right relative to each other. The present work and D34856 (CCCXLIV 368) are on the other side, at the bottom left and right relative to each other (albeit the present work, turned both ways, is imaged the other way up), the upper half being blank. D34855 is on the other side of D34854, and the present work on the other side of D34852 (CCCXLIV 364). The sheet is almost ripped in half by a jagged tear along the right-hand half of the horizontal fold, viewed from the other side (below the present work as imaged); it also extends from the centre, across D34851 on the other side.

Matthew Imms
August 2016

1
See Finberg 1909, II, p.1143.

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