|Artist||Frank Short after J.M.W Turner|
|Dimensions||Image 263 x 198 mm, Plate 275 x 211mm, Sheet 434 x 307 mm|
First published state.
Turner's view of Kingston Bank formed an unpublished part of the Liber Studiorium, or the Book of Studies. A personal manifesto, the series constituted Turner's ambitions for landscape art. Intended to be widely disseminated, the prints were begun in 1807 and were published in fourteen groups of five. By 1819 however, the project was faltering, unable to live up to the grand expectations Turner had envisaged. Though the artist fell short, the project was later resurrected by Frank Short and previously arcane views began to surface.
Sir Frank Short (1857-1945) was an English printmaker from Stourbridge, Worcestershire. He was instrumental in the revival of mezzotint and aquatint practise and was appointed the head for the department of engraving at the Royal College of Art in 1933. An ardent student of the works of J.M.W Turner; Short's reproductions of the Liber Studiorum delineate his exacting skill as well as a sympathetic study of the originals. Upon completion of Turner's most famous series, Short turned to his more esoteric material and published subjects of which the artist and his assitants had left incomplete years before. Several fine plates resulted from this study. In addition to his plaudits as a Royal Academician, Short twice won the gold medal for engraving at the Paris International Exhibition and was later knighted.
Turner's relatively sparse composition depicts a broad reach of river at harvest-time. Men process the crop on top of a cart whilst the shape of horses appear over the cornfields on the left. A man stoops to wash his face in the water, perhaps to convey the stifling heat of a summers morning. The clouds feel muggy and oppressive whilst light falls in linear beams upon the drowsy workers. A barge floats on the right, a horse-drawn cart ambles beyond it, and buildings appear on the horizon.
Condition: Severely time-worn paper. Large area of foxing to left hand side of sheet, one spot of which affects the image just above the cornfields. Inscription Content: Signed to lower right side of plate mark by 'Frank Short.'