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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Inscription ?by Turner: A Name and Address c.1823

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Inscription ?by Turner: A Name and Address c.1823
Ink on white wove paper, 186 x 224 mm
Inscribed by ?Turner in ink ‘To | The High Sheriff of Yorkshire | Walter Fawkes Esqr of Farnley | York’ at centre
Inscribed in pencil ‘CCCXLIV – 427 towards bottom left
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Turner’s close friend and major patron Walter Fawkes (1769–1825) was appointed High Sheriff of Yorkshire for the customary one year term in 1823.1 This sheet appears to have initially been an envelope, addressed to him in that role.2 Whether it was unsent or returned to Turner for some reason (assuming it is in his hand), is undetermined. Having possibly kept it initially for sentimental reasons, the artist eventually used the other side (Tate D34924; Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 427) for a study relating to a painting exhibited in 1837.
Compare Tate D40449, an envelope apparently addressed to Turner from Fawkes; the artist used the other side for a compositional study (Tate D27656; Turner Bequest CCLXXX 139).
See James Hamilton, ‘Fawkes, Walter Ramsden Hawkesworth (1769–1825)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, accessed 28 April 2016, http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/9231.
See Butlin and Joll 1984, p.221.
Technical notes:
As discussed above, the sheet initially served as an envelope, and was folded numerous times; there is slight tearing along the creases at the top and bottom edges.

Matthew Imms
August 2016

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘Inscription ?by Turner: A Name and Address c.1823 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, August 2016, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, February 2017, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-inscription-by-turner-a-name-and-address-r1184446, accessed 24 May 2024.