It appears that two different graphite pencils were used to draw this composition. The softer pencil (which gives a darker line) has been used in the middle-ground and background to add definition to several areas of the drawing, particularly foliage. The foreground, which is more loosely conceived than the rest of the image, has been sketched using a harder pencil which creates a paler, more delicate line. The same hard pencil was used to define the line of the distant hills. The sky has been left blank.
Both the recto and verso are covered with heavy surface dirt and many stains; however the drawing was been cleaned during conservation treatment to make it suitable for public display, because many of these marks are the result of Turner’s own handling and storage of the work, and they are evidence of its history. For example, there are fingerprint marks on the edges of the sheet where it has been turned by fingers stained with a brown, oil-based paint.
On the verso there are several patches of oil paint which have caused the prominent brown staining which is visible on the recto. There is also evidence of white, yellow and blue/green paints on the verso of the sheet. A prominent tide-line caused by water damage is noticeable along the entire left-hand side of the verso. The right-hand side of the verso has a layer of heavy, black surface dirt which appears to have been caused by the paper being scraped across a dirty surface, or possibly a floor or the ground.
How to cite
Helen Evans, 'Technique and Condition', October 2008, revised by Joyce Townsend, February 2011, in Andrew Wilton, ‘Brocklesby: The Hall seen from the Mausoleum 1798 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, April 2015, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-brocklesby-the-hall-seen-from-the-mausoleum-r1174097, accessed 22 September 2021.