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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Mountains, near the Simplon Pass 1819

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 11 Recto:
Mountains, near the Simplon Pass 1819
D16910
Turner Bequest CXCIV 11
Pencil and grey watercolour wash on white wove paper, 121 x 195 mm
Inscribed by the artist in pencil ‘snow’ centre right-hand edge of sketch
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘11’, bottom left, descending left-hand edge
Stamped in black ‘CXCIV 11’ bottom left, descending left-hand edge
 
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
This sketch depicts a view within the Swiss Alps near the Simplon Pass, although the precise location is impossible to identify. The details of the pencil drawing are difficult to make out against the background of the grey watercolour wash. However, there appear to be houses and trees near the central foreground, and the artist has employed some scratching-out to create passages of tonal contrast defining the silhouette of the mountains at the top.
For a general discussion of Turner’s expedition to the Simplon Pass see the introduction to the sketchbook.

Nicola Moorby
April 2011

How to cite

Nicola Moorby, ‘Mountains, near the Simplon Pass 1819 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, April 2011, 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-mountains-near-the-simplon-pass-r1132785, accessed 25 May 2024.