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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Scarborough from the South, near Black Rocks c.1816-18

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 7 Verso:
Scarborough from the South, near Black Rocks c.1816–18
Turner Bequest CLI 17a
Pencil on white wove paper, 116 x 182 mm
Stamped in brown ‘CLI 17a’ top left, descending vertically
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Andrew Wilton has noted the connection of this sketch with the finished watercolour of Scarborough (private collection)1 dated 1818. Here Turner outlines all the principal elements of the watercolour in a similar relationship, including the detached rock before the castle headland, and an indication of two figures at the lower left, greatly elaborated in the watercolour. A more detailed sketch of the same materials but with the rock to the right of the castle headland is in the Scarborough 1 sketchbook (Tate D11924; Turner Bequest CL 8). In the present sketch the harbour lighthouse is hidden behind the rock. In the watercolour Turner brings this out to the right, not altogether correctly, but presumably in order to amplify his detail and narrative. The sketch rather exaggerates the steepness of the castle cliff, and this is taken to extremes in the finished watercolour.

David Hill
September 2008

Wilton 1979, p.360 no.529.

How to cite

David Hill, ‘Scarborough from the South, near Black Rocks c.1816–18 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, September 2008, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, September 2014, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-scarborough-from-the-south-near-black-rocks-r1146983, accessed 18 August 2019.