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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Study of a Cloudy Sky; a Diagram or Architectural Section c.1817-19

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 3 Recto:
Study of a Cloudy Sky; a Diagram or Architectural Section c.1817–19
D13755
Turner Bequest CLXIX 3
Pencil on white wove paper, 87 x 119 mm
Part watermark ‘atman | y Mills | 17’
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘3’ bottom right (smudged)
Stamped in black ‘CLXIX – 3’ bottom right
 
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The roughly geometrical diagram may perhaps be a section through a top-lit room with a sloping ceiling and deeply recessed skylight, with an indication of rays entering from various angles. If so it may be a memorandum of a gallery Turner had seen, such as Dulwich Picture Gallery, designed by Turner’s friend (Sir) John Soane, opened to the public in 1817 having been available to ‘privileged visitors’ since 1815,1 or a rough idea for his own.
There are slight continuations from the cloud study on folio 2 verso opposite (D13754).

Matthew Imms
September 2013

1
Giles Waterfield, Soane and After: The Architecture of Dulwich Picture Gallery, exhibition catalogue, Dulwich Picture Gallery, London 1987, p.24.

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘Study of a Cloudy Sky; a Diagram or Architectural Section c.1817–19 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, September 2013, 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-study-of-a-cloudy-sky-a-diagram-or-architectural-section-r1147478, accessed 29 January 2020.