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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Study of a Head ?1792

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Study of a Head ?1792
Black chalk and stump on off-white paper, 372 x 266 mm
Stamped in brown ink with Turner Bequest monogram bottom centre
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Finberg tentatively identified this head as that of the Venus de’ Medici, which is studied in whole length on the recto of this sheet (D00059; Turner Bequest V F). But the turn of the neck is to the figure’s right rather than to the left, and the coiffure is apparently not the same, suggesting that this represents a different statue. The most likely candidate is the head of Paris that Turner studied on Tate D00054 (Turner Bequest V A) from this series.

Andrew Wilton
April 2012

How to cite

Andrew Wilton, ‘Study of a Head ?1792 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, April 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-study-of-a-head-r1140266, accessed 25 February 2021.