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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner ?Northern Italian or Swiss Mountains c.1828-44

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
?Northern Italian or Swiss Mountains c.1828–44
Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 187
Pencil on off-white wove paper prepared with a grey-brown wash, 139 x 191 mm
Inscribed by Turner in pencil ‘[?Lero]’ bottom right, ascending vertically
Inscribed in red ink ‘187’ bottom right
Stamped in black ‘CCCXLIV 187’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
This mountainous subject is unidentified, but may be in the north of Italy or neighbouring Switzerland; see the Introduction to this section for further brief discussion and dating. Turner’s inscription is uncertain, and the loosely drawn scene may in fact be vertically orientated, with what may be an associated place name at the bottom left.
There is another mountain scene on the verso (D34578; Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 187v); the views were made on one half of a folded sheet, with D34580 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 188v) opposite the present sketch and D34579 (Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 189) on its recto.
Finberg noted: ‘(Nos. [Turner Bequest CCCXLIV] 174–226 were among the contents of a parcel endorsed by Mr. [John] Ruskin, – “B. 2. Forty-eight pieces of paper, some double or 4-ple. Pencil outline, same class as B. 1.”).’1
Finberg 1909, II, p.1123.
Technical notes:
The unusually heavy textured paper matches that of another sheet used for similar subjects (Tate D34586–D34589; Turner Bequest CCCXLIV 192–193v) and the two were originally one, having been folded into quarters and torn in half. One side appears to have been prepared with a light grey-brown wash.

Matthew Imms
February 2016

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘?Northern Italian or Swiss Mountains c.1828–44 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, February 2016, 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-northern-italian-or-swiss-mountains-r1183056, accessed 27 May 2024.