Hulks at Sheerness

  • About the work
    This painting shows the Royal Dockyard at Sheerness, in north Kent. The view of the buildings is obscured by three vast hulks (i.e. ships moored in a permanent position, which were no longer fit to go to sea, despite being afloat). The rigging and internal equipment was generally removed and the vessel converted to be used as accommodation. The hulks moored at Sheerness Dockyard were connected to each other by rope bridges. Some were used as accommodation for prisoners. 

  • About the artist
    Landscapist William Marlow was born in London or Southwark. He trained in the studio of marine painter Samuel Scott in Covent Garden (1756-61) and is also thought to have studied at the St Martin’s Lane Academy. Marlow spent his early career travelling around England in search of subjects; painting English country houses and the areas around Twickenham, Richmond, and the lower banks of the Thames. On the advice of the Duchess of Northumberland he travelled to France and Italy (1765-66). He exhibited at the Society of Artists, becoming Vice-President in 1778, and at the Royal Academy. Marlow lived for a time in Leicester Fields (now Leicester Square). His one pupil was John Curtis. In c.1785 he retired to Twickenham, where he died aged 72.
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  • Details
    Title
    Hulks at Sheerness
    Date
    Medium
    Oil on panel
    Dimensions
    height: 37.50 cm, width: 52.00 cm
    Acquisition
    Purchased from the Executors of Sir Bruce Ingram, 1963
    GAC number
    1452