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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Two Boats at Sea, ?near Wimereux 1845

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Two Boats at Sea, ?near Wimereux 1845
Turner Bequest CCCLVII 3
Pencil and watercolour on paper, 238 x 337 mm
Inscribed by Turner in pencil ‘12 May 1845’ bottom left
Inscribed by John Ruskin in red ink ‘3’ bottom right
Stamped in black ink ‘CCCLVII 3’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
Dark grey clouds arch over this sea view, dwarfing two small fishing boats out on the horizon. In this respect it forms a group with the subsequent two works as originally constituted in the sketchbook (D35389–D35390; Turner Bequest CCCLVII 4, 5). The present sketch particularly resembles D35389, which is inscribed ‘Vim’, Turner’s phonetic abbreviation for Wimereux, possibly also locating this scene near the former naval garrison of that name. Small-scale fishing had become the main industry of this ‘sorry hamlet’ by the 1840s as its military-strategic importance declined during the post-Napoleonic peace with Great Britain.1
J. Brunet, New Guide to Boulogne-sur-Mer, 3rd ed., Boulogne 1840, p.131.
Blank; the sheet was not available for inspection out of its frame at the time of cataloguing.

John Chu
December 2013

How to cite

John Chu, ‘Two Boats at Sea, ?near Wimereux 1845 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, December 2013, in David Blayney Brown (ed.), J.M.W. Turner: Sketchbooks, Drawings and Watercolours, Tate Research Publication, April 2015, https://www.tate.org.uk/art/research-publications/jmw-turner/joseph-mallord-william-turner-two-boats-at-sea-near-wimereux-r1173487, accessed 06 December 2020.