View on the Stour: Dedham Church in the distance thumbnail 1
View on the Stour: Dedham Church in the distance thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Request to view at the Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C , Case MB2A, Shelf DR108

View on the Stour: Dedham Church in the distance

Drawing
1832-1836 (drawn)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This drawing is based upon the central section of Constable's oil painting Dedham Lock and Mill, which is also in the V&A's collection. It is likely to be a reworking of the painting, rather than a direct drawing from nature. The drawing, though, gives the scene a strikingly different character. Whereas the painting is bathed with sunlight and depicts busy water traffic, the drawing's dramatic use of tone creates an atmosphere of brooding melancholy. Line is hardly evident at all. Nearly all the forms are created with solid blocks of dark sepia ink, with few mid-tones. The tower of Dedham church can be seen in the distance, apparently threatened by the ominous and overhanging forms of the trees.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Pencil and sepia wash
Brief Description
John Constable, 'View on the Stour : Dedham Church in the distance', c.1832-6, Reynolds cat. no. 410
Physical Description
Brown depiction of Dedham Church viewed from the Stour.
Dimensions
  • Height: 11.5cm
  • Width: 18.1cm
Style
Marks and Inscriptions
'GILLING &' (Truncated watermark.)
Credit line
Bequeathed by Isabel Constable, daughter of the artist
Historical context
'In 1836 Constable's two exhibits at the Royal Academy were the 'Cenotaph to the memory of Sir Joshua Reynolds' (now in the Tate Gallery, No. 1272) and the watercolour 'Stonehenge' (No. 395 [1629-1888]). He gave four lectures on 'The History of Landscape Painting' at the Royal Institution in May and June of this year and his last lecture, at Hampstead, on 25 July. Constable died on 31 March 1837. His almost completed painting 'Arundel Mill and Castle' (now in the Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, Ohio; see No. 379 [260-1888]) was exhibited posthumously at the Royal Academy.'



[G Reynolds, 1973, p. 233]
Subject depicted
Places Depicted
Summary
This drawing is based upon the central section of Constable's oil painting Dedham Lock and Mill, which is also in the V&A's collection. It is likely to be a reworking of the painting, rather than a direct drawing from nature. The drawing, though, gives the scene a strikingly different character. Whereas the painting is bathed with sunlight and depicts busy water traffic, the drawing's dramatic use of tone creates an atmosphere of brooding melancholy. Line is hardly evident at all. Nearly all the forms are created with solid blocks of dark sepia ink, with few mid-tones. The tower of Dedham church can be seen in the distance, apparently threatened by the ominous and overhanging forms of the trees.
Bibliographic References
  • Owens, Susan, The Art of Drawing British Masters and Methods since 1600, V&A Publishing, London, 2013, p. 75 & 85, fig. 63
  • Parris, Leslie and Fleming-Williams, Ian. Constable London : The Tate Gallery, 1991no.343
  • Gray, Anne and John Gage, Constable: impressions of land, sea and sky, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2006
  • Hoozee, Robert (ed.), British Vision. Observation and Imagination in British Art 1750-1950, Brussels : Mercatorfonds ; Ghent : Museum voor Schone Kunsten, 2007177
  • Catalogue of the Constable Collection, Graham Reynolds, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: HMSO, 1973, pp. 233, 240
Other Number
410, plate 308. - Reynolds catalogue no.
Collection
Accession Number
249-1888

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record createdFebruary 20, 2004
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