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

ISBN 978-1-84976-386-8

Joseph Mallord William Turner Vessels and Distant Hills 1818

Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775–1851
Folio 11 Recto:
Vessels and Distant Hills 1818
Turner Bequest CLXVI 11
Pencil on white wove paper, 90 x 112 mm
Stamped in black ‘CLXVI 11’ bottom right
Accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856
On this page are four of the seven small sailing vessels continued from the drawing on folio 10 verso (D13468). These boats exhibit more variety than the three on the opposite page, with the two boats on the left pointing into the picture, and the two on the left pointing to the right. Although the sketches are slight Turner has explored variations in the set of the sails, showing the one on the left close-hauled into the wind, while the second from the right is billowing out with the wind directly behind it. The wind does seem to be in the same direction for all the boats, which give the impression that they are distinct vessels observed together, rather than one or two drawn several times.
This drawing is one of several studies of boats at sail in this sketchbook: folios 2 verso, 3, 4, 6, 8 verso, 9, 10 verso, 11, 45 verso – 46 verso, 48, 51, 52 verso, 53 and 65 verso (D13452, D13453, D13455, D13459, D13464, D13465, D13469, D13538–D13540, D13543, D13549, D13552, D13553, D13576).

Thomas Ardill
December 2007

How to cite

Thomas Ardill, ‘Vessels and Distant Hills 1818 by Joseph Mallord William Turner’, catalogue entry, December 2007, 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-vessels-and-distant-hills-r1132014, accessed 24 August 2019.