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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Syon House through Trees by the River Thames c.1805

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 2 Recto:
Syon House through Trees by the River Thames c.1805
Turner Bequest LXV 2
Ink on cream laid writing paper, 118 x 184 mm
Part watermark ‘J Lar
Inscribed by Turner in ink ‘Bl’ top left, ‘4’ top centre, ‘1’ at centre, ‘3’ below centre, ‘5’ towards bottom left and ‘2’ towards bottom right
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘2’ bottom right
Stamped in black ‘LXV – 2’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
The building at the centre is Syon House, seen to the west from the wooded banks of the River Thames, with the corner turret of its castellated façade being the most characteristic feature; the projecting central bay on this front also appears to be indicated; the subject was recognised by Turner scholar C.F. Bell.1 Folio 1 recto (D03802) shows a variant view.
Standing just north of Turner’s Isleworth base at Syon Ferry House (see the overall Introduction to this section), the imposing residence of the Dukes of Northumberland features in various studies of this period; see for example the watercolour known as ‘The Swan’s Nest’ (Tate D04163; Turner Bequest LXX L), and an ink drawing of a similar aspect in the Studies for Pictures: Isleworth sketchbook (Tate D05507; Turner Bequest XC 12).
For Turner’s use of numbers within the drawings in this book, see the Introduction.
C.F. Bell (died 1966), undated MS note in copy of Finberg 1909, Prints and Drawings Room, Tate Britain, I, p.167; copied by Finberg (died 1939) in interleaved copy at same location, opposite p.167.
Blank. There is faint offsetting from the ink drawing on folio 3 recto opposite (D03804).

Matthew Imms
April 2016

How to cite

Matthew Imms, ‘Syon House through Trees by the River Thames c.1805 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, April 2016, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, December 2016, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-syon-house-through-trees-by-the-river-thames-r1183640, accessed 16 January 2021.