Woman and Tambourine

Joseph Mallord William Turner, Published on 20 January 1807

WAG 4476

About this object

This print, 'Woman and Tambourine', is plate 3 of Turner's 'Liber Studiorum' series. It is an example of the 'Elevated (or epic) Pastoral' category of landscape painting. It was published with the 1st part of the series on 20 January 1807.

Turner included an additional sub-category within the ‘pastoral’ genre of landscape art. The ‘elevated (or epic) pastoral’ was signified by the letters ‘EP’.

‘Elevated pastoral’ pictures had grander compositions than those of the simpler ‘pastoral’ prints. They were influenced in composition and subject by the work of Claude Lorrain (1604/5 – 1682). These works used classical imagery like the figures in the foreground, similar to those in Turner’s oil painting Linlithgow Palace displayed nearby, to suggest a vision of Arcadia.

The 'Liber Studiorum' illustrated Turner’s arguments for the supremacy of landscape painting. The title means ‘book of studies’ in Latin. It contained no written text, instead it was made up of individual mezzotint prints on paper. They were released in fourteen parts from around 1807 until 1819. Turner intended the 'Liber' to consist of 100 prints but only 71 were ultimately produced.

The prints reflected the five categories of landscape painting Turner believed existed: architectural, historical, marine, mountainous and pastoral. Turner wrote an initial on each work to indicate which category it belonged to.

Object specifics

  • Artist(s)
    Charles Turner (British, born:31 July 1774, died:01 August 1857)
    Joseph Mallord William Turner (British: English, born:probably 23 April 1775, died:19 December 1851)
  • Date
    Published on 20 January 1807
  • Materials
    Mezzotint; Paper
  • Measurements
    image: 18.4 cm x 26.8 cm
  • Physical description
    A classical landscape of a woman and tambourine performing for a couple and their child. On the right there is a ruined castle and on the bank houses amongst trees. A river flows beneath a ruined bridge in the centre. Animals graze in the foreground beside grouped figures on the left.
  • Related people
    Charles Turner (Artist/maker, engraver); Joseph Mallord William Turner (Artist/maker)
  • Other number(s)
    WAG Inventory Number: 4476
  • Credit line
    Purchased by the Walker Art Gallery in 1874
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Collection
    From the Walker Art Gallery collections


Item inscriptions

  • Inscription text: E.P.
    Inscription method: Printed
    Inscription note:
    Inscription location: Above plate
Object view = Fine Art
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