River scene at Mistley, Essex thumbnail 1
River scene at Mistley, Essex 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 F

River scene at Mistley, Essex

Drawing
c. 1817-1819 (drawn)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Two of Constable's drawings of Mistley, a river port near Harwich, are in the Museum's collection. This view of the approach to Mistley by river, made either in 1817 or 1819, depicts the town in greater detail than the earlier view (1813). In the distance can be seen the twin towers of Mistley church, which was designed by the eminent architect Robert Adam.


object details
Category
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Pencil and paper
Brief Description
Drawing of a river scene at Mistley, by John Constable
Physical Description
A pencil drawing of a river, with three ships, their sails furled, receding into the distance. At lower right a man in a barge. The riverbank is wooded; the town of Mistley, with its twin-towered church, appears indistinctly in the distance.
Dimensions
  • Height: 116mm
  • Width: 186mm
Marks and Inscriptions
'20', followed by an indistinct word (According to Reynolds, the indistinct word after '20' may be 'Aug'.)
Credit line
Given by Isabel Constable, daughter of the artist
Object history
This drawing, a page from a sketchbook, may have been made in 1817, when Constable is known to have made another drawing on the same site. Mistley Church, whose twin towers appear in the distance, was designed by Robert Adam.
Historical context
In 1819 Constable exhibited at the Royal Academy 'A scene on the River Stour' ('The White Horse'), bought by John Fisher, and now in the Frick Collection, New York (see the sketch-book No. 132, pp. 66 and 70). His second child Maria Louisa (Minna) was born on 19 July. He took a house at Hampstead for the first time at the end of the summer. He was elected A.R.A. on 1 November.



[G Reynolds, 1973, p. 121]
Production
Drawing is listed under 189 in Reynolds catalogue, although there is a possiblity is dates from 1817; there is an indistinct inscription in the lower right corner that reads '20', followed by an indistinct word, which Reynolds guesses might be 'Aug'.
Subjects depicted
Places Depicted
Summary
Two of Constable's drawings of Mistley, a river port near Harwich, are in the Museum's collection. This view of the approach to Mistley by river, made either in 1817 or 1819, depicts the town in greater detail than the earlier view (1813). In the distance can be seen the twin towers of Mistley church, which was designed by the eminent architect Robert Adam.
Bibliographic Reference
Catalogue of the Constable Collection, Graham Reynolds, Victoria and Albert Museum, London: HMSO, 1973, pp. 121, 126
Other Number
181, plate 143 - Reynolds catalogue no.
Collection
Accession Number
620-1888

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record createdOctober 13, 2005
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