J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner A Boat by a Pier, with ?Fishermen c.1826-40

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
A Boat by a Pier, with ?Fishermen c.1826–40
Turner Bequest CCLX 108
Watercolour on blue wove paper, 139 x 190 mm
Blind-stamped with Turner Bequest monogram towards bottom right
Inscribed in red ink ‘108’ bottom right
Stamped in black ‘CCLX 108’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The various elements here do not seem to cohere very readily. A sturdy but apparently small boat with at least two occupants, perhaps fishermen, is seemingly depicted on a larger scale than the man, woman and child standing on the beach to the left. The pale forms of figures on a pier or quay beyond seem an afterthought, as though Turner were experimenting with an idea for a composition.
The family group appears well dressed, and they are perhaps tourists embarking or disembarking; for other examples of both fishermen and travellers, see the Introduction.
Blank; inscribed in pencil ‘D.24944’ bottom left. There is a border of white paper or tape, indicating that the sheet was formerly mounted.

Matthew Imms
December 2015

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘A Boat by a Pier, with ?Fishermen c.1826–40 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, December 2015, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, November 2016, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-a-boat-by-a-pier-with-fishermen-r1182594, accessed 24 April 2024.