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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner St Catherine's Hill, near Guildford, Surrey c.1830

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
St Catherine’s Hill, near Guildford, Surrey c.1830
Turner Bequest CCLXIII 28
Watercolour on white wove paper, 357 x 510 mm
Watermark ‘Ruse and Turners | 1828’
Inscribed in red ink ‘28’ bottom right
Blind-stamped with Turner Bequest monogram towards bottom right
Stamped in black ‘CCLXIII – 28’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Eric Shanes has acknowledged Ian Warrell’s unpublished identification1 of this ‘colour-structure study’2 as relating to the watercolour St Catherine’s Hill, near Guildford, Surrey of about 1830 (Yale Center for British Art, New Haven),3 engraved in 1832 for the Picturesque Views in England and Wales (Tate impressions: T04587, T05088, T06096, T06097). The scene is on the south side of Guildford, with St Catherine’s Hill, the setting for the ruined medieval chapel of the same dedication in the finished watercolour, and the Portsmouth road in the hollow to the right, where a coach is prefigured here by a central raised shape here. The very loose strokes of pale brown towards the bottom right may hint at the crowds who throng the annual fair all across the foreground of the England and Wales composition.
Earlier pencil sketches of the chapel include one from the north in the 1807 Spithead sketchbook (Tate D06617; Turner Bequest C 75a); the view from the south was the subject of a Liber Studiorum design (see under D08137; Turner Bequest CXVII J).
See also the introductions to the present subsection of identified subjects and the overall England and Wales ‘colour beginnings’ grouping to which this work has been assigned.
Shanes 1997, pp.50, 95; see also p.104.
See ibid., pp.11, 21.
Andrew Wilton, J.M.W. Turner: His Life and Work, Fribourg 1979, p.498 no.837, reproduced.

Matthew Imms
March 2013

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘St Catherine’s Hill, near Guildford, Surrey c.1830 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, March 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2013, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-st-catherines-hill-near-guildford-surrey-r1144285, accessed 24 May 2024.