Line Fishing, Off Hastings thumbnail 1
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Paintings, Room 87, The Edwin and Susan Davies Galleries

Line Fishing, Off Hastings

Oil Painting
ca. 1835 (painted)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This painting shows inshore fishermen using a baited line in the English Channel. Turner based it on a sketchbook drawing of 1816 and a watercolour of 1818. A critic described the painting as 'a beautiful marine piece'. It is probably a pair with the painting St Michael's Mount, Cornwall, also in the V&A.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
oil on canvas
Brief Description
Oil painting entitled 'Line Fishing, Off Hastings' by J. M. W. Turner. Great Britain, ca. 1835.
Physical Description
Exhibited at the RA in 1835, and bought (or possibly commissioned - see Butlin and Joll, I, p.189) by John Sheepshanks. Butlin and Joll note that the work shows essentially the same view as a watercolour in the British Museum signed and dated 1818, which is in turn based on a drawing in the second "Hastings" sketchbook of 1816. The foreground shipping is composed differently, however, and the oil painting shows the land further away.
Dimensions
  • Estimate height: 58.4cm
  • Estimate width: 76.2cm
Dimensions taken from Catalogue of British Oil Paintings 1820-1860, Ronald Parkinson, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: HMSO, 1990
Style
Credit line
Given by John Sheepshanks, 1857
Object history
FA 207 was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1835 (no. 234), and bought (or possibly commissioned ) by John Sheepshanks; by whom given to the museum 1857



[John Sheepshanks]

Extract from Parkinson, Ronald, Catalogue of British Oil Paintings 1820-1860. Victoria & Albert Museum, HMSO, London, 1990. p.xviii.



John Sheepshanks (1784-1863) was the son of a wealthy cloth manufacturer. He entered the family business, but his early enthusiasms were for gardening and the collecting of Dutch and Flemish prints. He retired from business at the age of 40, by which time he had begun collecting predominantly in the field of modern British art. He told Richard Redgrave RA, then a curator in the South Kensington Museum (later the V&A) of his intention to give his collection to the nation. The gallery built to house the collection was the first permanent structure on the V&A site, and all concerned saw the Sheepshanks Gift as forming the nucleus of a National Gallery of British Art. Sheepshanks commissioned works from contemporary artists, bought from the annual RA summer exhibitions, but also bought paintings by artists working before Queen Victoria ascended the throne in 1837. The Sheepshanks Gift is the bedrock of the V&A's collection of British oil paintings, and served to encourage many other collectors to make donations and bequests.



Historical significance: Butlin and Joll note that the work shows essentially the same view as a watercolour in the British Museum signed and dated 1818, which is in turn based on a drawing in the second 'Hastings' sketchbook of 1816. The foreground shipping is composed differently, however, and the oil painting shows the land further away.



Reviews of the RA concentrated on the 'Burning of the Houses of Parliament' (Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio) and 'Keelmen Heaving in Coals by Night' (National Gallery of Art, Washington DC). The Literary Gazette (9 May 1835) thought it 'Decidedly one of Mr Turner's most charming productions', and the Spectator on the same day described it as 'a beautiful marine piece'; Waagen in 1854 found it 'very cleverly composed, though slight in execution'.



Engraved by W Miller, for the Turner Gallery 1859





Ronald Parkinson."
Historical context
JMW Turner was born Covent Garden, London, 23 April 1775, son of a barber. Entered RA Schools 1789. In a long and exceptionally distinguished career, exhibited 259 works at the RA between 1790 and 1850 and 17 at the BI 1806-1846, predominantly landscapes, sometimes with historical themes. Generally considered the greatest painter in the history of British art. Died Chelsea, London, 19 December 1851 and buried in St Paul's Cathedral. Bequeathed his extensive collection of oil paintings and watercolours to the nation, now principally housed in the Clore wing of the Tate Gallery.
Subjects depicted
Summary
This painting shows inshore fishermen using a baited line in the English Channel. Turner based it on a sketchbook drawing of 1816 and a watercolour of 1818. A critic described the painting as 'a beautiful marine piece'. It is probably a pair with the painting St Michael's Mount, Cornwall, also in the V&A.
Bibliographic References
  • Martin Butlin and Evelyn Joll, The Paintings of J.M.W. Turner, London & New Haven 1977, vol. I, p.194 (cat no 363) Ronald Parkinson, Catalogue of British Oil Paintings 1820-1860, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: HMSO, 1990, p. 282
  • Evans, Mark et al. Vikutoria & Arubāto Bijutsukan-zō : eikoku romanshugi kaigaten = The Romantic tradition in British painting, 1800-1950 : masterpieces from the Victoria and Albert Museum. Japan : Brain Trust, 2002
Collection
Accession Number
FA.207[O]

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record createdJuly 22, 2003
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