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J.M.W. Turner RA, The Woman and Tambourine

The Woman and Tambourine, 11 June 1807?

J.M.W. Turner RA (1775 - 1851)

RA Collection: Art

Issued in part 1 of the Liber, this is the first plate to be published in Turner's 'EP' category. Unlike his other abbreviations - 'H' for Historical, 'M' or 'Ms' for Mountainous, 'P' for Pastoral, 'M' for Marine and 'A' for Architectural - Turner never revealed what he meant the letters 'EP' to stand for. However, since all fourteen parts of the Liber include an 'EP' and Pastoral subject, it is clear that the two categories were always intended in some sense to define each other through a contrast of 'high' (or 'elevated') and 'low' (i.e. mundane) subject matter. In common with many of the subsequent EP plates, 'Woman and Tambourine' is a deliberate evocation of Claude Lorrain's 'poetic' or 'Arcadian' mode of landscape painting. In these subjects Turner is taking up the challenge not only of bettering Richard Earlom's engravings of Claude's Liber Veritatis (the poor quality of which as reproductions he clearly set out to avoid in his own 'Liber'), but also of demonstrating his ability to match Claude's mastery of classical landscape.

Object details

The Woman and Tambourine
J.M.W. Turner RA (1775 - 1851)
Etched by
J.M.W. Turner RA (1775 - 1851)
Engraved by
Charles Turner ARA (1774 - 1857)
Printed by
James Lahee (fl. 1810 - after 1852)
Published by
J.M.W. Turner RA (1775 - 1851)
J.M.W. Turner, Liber Studiorum, London, [1807-19], Part I, [pl. 3]
11 June 1807?
Object type
Etching and mezzotint

183 mm x 266 mm

Royal Academy of Arts
Object number
Given by A. Acland Allen 1938
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