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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Profiles of Classical Columns c.1808-11

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 65 Recto:
Profiles of Classical Columns circa 1808–11
Turner Bequest CXIV 65
Pencil on white wove paper, 87 x 117 mm
Inscribed by Turner in pencil (see main catalogue entry)
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘65’ top right ascending vertically
Stamped in black ‘CXIV – 65’ top right, ascending vertically
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
With the page turned vertically, the main sketch, annotated with what may be an ‘S’ and a ‘4’, appears to be the upright, left-hand profile of a classical column, with two even more summary profiles to its left. These are likely to relate to the preparations for Turner’s Royal Academy perspective lectures, beginning in January 1811, for which he made various more substantial architectural studies in this sketchbook (see the Introduction).
Technical notes:
Disrupting the pencil drawing are lines of ink offsetting showing that the page was once opposite an ink inscription written with the book turned horizontally. Finberg noted that ‘pp. 61–73’, i.e. folios 61recto–73 verso (D08038–D08057), ‘were all loose and in different bundles. Their sequence is therefore conjectural’.1 There is now no corresponding page elsewhere in the sketchbook from which this offsetting could have come, and the inscription is presumably lost. It was probably a further page of notes from the same source as those written in ink on the verso of the present leaf (D08045).

Matthew Imms
January 2012

Finberg 1909, I, p.312.

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘Profiles of Classical Columns c.1808–11 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, January 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-profiles-of-classical-columns-r1134823, accessed 22 May 2022.