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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Rain Clouds Approaching over a Landscape c.1822-40

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Rain Clouds Approaching over a Landscape c.1822–40
Turner Bequest CCLXIII 337
Gouache and watercolour on white wove paper, 182 x 226 mm
Watermark ‘J Whatman | Turkey Mill | 1822’
Blind-stamped with Turner Bequest monogram bottom centre
Stamped in black ‘CCLXIII – 337’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The low, billowing cumulonimbus-type cloud formations here are the most extensively and carefully worked among the examples in the present subsection, while embryonic landscape forms are evoked through the varied application of broad brushstrokes. Tate D25453 (Turner Bequest CCLXIII 330), now badly faded, may originally have had something of the same effect.
There is a presumably fortuitous echo after more than two decades of the dramatic skies of Turner’s early seascapes in oil, such as Dutch Boats in a Gale: Fishermen Endeavouring to Put their Fish on Board (‘The Bridgewater Sea Piece’), exhibited in 1801 (private collection, on loan to the National Gallery, London),1 with its contrasting narrow strip of sunlit horizon.
There are unrelated rough architectural elevations in pencil on the verso (D41486; Turner Bequest CCLXIII 337v).
Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, revised ed., New Haven and London 1984, pp.12–13 no.14, pl.11 (colour).
Technical notes:
There appears to be gouache in heaviest clouds? Fingerprint top right

Matthew Imms
March 2016

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘Rain Clouds Approaching over a Landscape c.1822–40 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 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-rain-clouds-approaching-over-a-landscape-r1183161, accessed 30 October 2020.