Joseph Mallord William Turner

Three Views of the Coast near Sorrento, with Punta Scutolo


In Tate Britain

Prints and Drawings Room

View by appointment
Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite on paper
Support: 189 × 113 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest CLXXXV 62

Catalogue entry

This page contains three views related to Turner’s journey by sea along the Sorrentine peninsula. The two upper studies both depict the view looking west towards the Punto Scutolo, a promontory on the coast near Vico Equense and below Montechiaro. Turner has exploited the vertical height of the sketchbook in order to depict the impressive scale of the sheer cliff face looming above the small rowing boat below. There is a small tower situated at the tip of the headland overlooking the sea, and another on the shoreline at the base of the cliffs. A similar prospect can be seen in an earlier watercolour by John ‘Warwick’ Smith (1749–1831), Coast of Sorrento 1778–9 (Tate, T08499).
The sketch at the bottom depicts a point slightly further west around the promontory with the village and harbour of Alimuri, part of the Bay of Sorrento in the distance beyond. For further views see folio 63 verso (D15854; Turner Bequest CLXXXV 62a).

Nicola Moorby
November 2010

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