Joseph Mallord William Turner

?Traeth Mawr, looking East towards Y Cnicht and Moelwyn Mawr


On loan

Frist Center for the Visual Arts (Nashville, USA): The Sea and the Alps: Turner's Quest for the Sublime

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Graphite and watercolour on paper
Support: 545 × 764 mm
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner Bequest LX a F

Catalogue entry

The identification of this view is uncertain. Exhibited in Turner in Wales in 1984 under the present title, it was formerly thought to show a view looking towards Snowdon and the Pass of Llanberis, with Elidir Fawr and Moel Eilio. However, the broad sandflats in the foreground of the scene suggest the estuary of the Glaslyn, known as Traeth Mawr or ‘Great Beach’ until reclaimed under the drainage schemes of William Madocks, who created Porthmadog in the early years of the nineteenth century; see the entry for the note at the beginning of the 1798 Hereford Court sketchbook (Tate D01247; Turner Bequest XXXVIII, recto of front flyleaf).
Technical notes:
There are traces of a vertical centre fold.

Andrew Wilton
May 2013

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