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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner A Tree, with a Line of Trees Beyond c.1789

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 8 Recto:
A Tree, with a Line of Trees Beyond c.1789
Turner Bequest II 8
Pencil, pen and black ink with wash on white laid paper, 160 x 249 mm
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘8’ bottom right
Stamped in black ‘II 8’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The drawing is continued on folio 7 verso (D00018). It is an early example of Turner’s interest in the growth patterns and forms of trees, which he is already able to invest with lively energy. In comparison with the extremely generalised formulas used for foliage in other drawings in this a book, this is a surprisingly sophisticated piece of careful observation. The specimen shown here seems to be an oak, or possibly a plane, and may have been drawn in the grounds of Radley Hall; see folio 9 recto (D00021). Compare the study of a tree on folio 5 recto (D00015), and the drawing of a line of trees on folio 26 recto (D00044).

Andrew Wilton
April 2012

How to cite

Andrew Wilton, ‘A Tree, with a Line of Trees Beyond c.1789 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, April 2012, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2012, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-a-tree-with-a-line-of-trees-beyond-r1140173, accessed 25 May 2022.