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Joseph Mallord William Turner

Joseph Mallord William Turner, better known as J.M.W. Turner, was born
on April 23, 1775, in Covent Garden, London, England. A sickly child, Turner
was sent to live with his uncle in rural England, and it was during this period
that he began his artistic career. As a landscape painter, Turner brought
luminosity and Romantic imagery to his subjects. His workinitially realistic
became more fluid and poetic, and is now regarded as a predecessor to
Impressionism. Turner died on December 19, 1851, in Cheyne Walk, Chelsea,
London, England. J.M.W. Turner is an amazing artist that brought a new touch
to romanticism, and as a leading Romantic painter focusing mainly on color
and lighting, Turner's works went on to later influence the Impressionist
movement.
Romanticism is sometimes viewed as a reaction to its more serious
predecessor, the neoclassical movement. As Neoclassical artists focused on
properly accounting history through close attention to detail, Romantic
artists flirted with themes of man's self-glorification, man's part in nature,
divinity found in nature, and emotion. His art works contains mostly
landscapes with the occasional portrait. Ive personally noticed that most of
his works take place with the ocean. They are many times in a storm and you
see a boat rocking back and forth, or on a port where you can see the ships
floating in. There were very few paintings that didnt include the ocean in
some way.

J. M.W. Turner began his artistic career at a very young age and his
success was almost immediate, selling his first painting at just 12 years old.
Turner continued to accomplish significant achievements at a remarkably
young age, some that people with much more experience would never have
the privilege of enjoying. Throughout his career Turner remained highly
sought-after and he acquired a very large fortune from his commissions. He
is remembered as an influential painter and is said to be the best landscapist
of the 19th century. Turner was also a key inspiration for the Impressionist
movement. He is most well-known for his original interpretations of bringing
light and color to his paintings.
Turner displayed an evident evolution in his painting style throughout
his long career. Though he stayed true to the genre of landscape, as his
career progressed he began to pay less attention to the details of objects
and landscape and more attention to the effects of light and color. He
became increasingly fascinated with natural and atmospheric elements.
Looking at his art you can see his earlier works are detailed, but his later
ones are not as detailed but they contain several light effects and they are a
bit more blurry to the eye.
In Turner's early paintings he executed dramatic, Romantic subjects by
emphasizing luminosity, and atmosphere. One can observe a more precise
attention paid to architectural and natural details in his early years, as
compared to his later years. During this time, he played around with all the
styles of landscape composition including historical, architectural,

mountainous, pastoral and marine. His series of 71 etchings, inspired from


his existing paintings and watercolors, show all of these styles (1807-1819).
Turner's painting style shifted during the 1880s. His painting became
more luminous and atmospheric. He began to focus more on color than the
details of the actual topography. St. Mawes at the Pilchard Season (1812) is
an example. Frosty Morning (1813) is based solely on the effects of light. As
time progressed he paid less attention to specific details and more to
atmospheric quality created by the natural elements, such as the sun.
Still, less and less attention is given to detail, while his canvas now
begin to assume a suggestion of movement. His Norham Castle, Sunrise and
With A Boat Between Headlands are both examples of slightly brushed
canvases, mere color notations. Some of his more famous later paintings, he
approaches the subject of modern technology. He pays a tribute to the
passing age of sail ships that were soon to be replaced by steam-powered
vessels. He moves away from marine subject matter, and focuses now on the
railway in Rain, Steam, and Speed-the Great Western Railway (1844). This is
a prime example of how Turner focused mainly on colors and the idea of
fluidity through his whirling colors.
Turners methods included watercolor paintings and oil paintings.
Turner's watercolor paintings provided a later influence on his technique with
oil paint. He started to use oil paint in a translucent manner, similar to the
effect of water color, which helped produce his original style. Before painting

a vast majority of his work, as many of his subjects (mainly water) changed
so quickly, he had to do preliminary sketches. He later turned his sketches in
to watercolor or oil paintings.

This is JMW Turners Dido Building Carthage. This is one of Turners


earlier works and you can see the detail he puts into the painting. You can
see every person, building structure, and plant. This is very detailed to be an
oil painting like many of his other paintings this paining includes water that
runs into the ocean, but this painting doesnt include any storm, it is peaceful
(I think it is). In this painting you can see the romanticism influence with the
sun, people and calm sea. There are buildings from the time having the large
pillars made from white stone.

This is Turners Snow Storm: Steam-Boat off a Harbours Mouth painted


in 1842. This is one of Turners later paintings. There is very little detail even
for a snow storm. One can see the detail of the steam boat but everything
including the boat is blurry. Rather than focusing on detail, the lighting is
amazing. You can see the darkness of the sea, the light breaking through the
heavens behind the steam-boat, and the light laminating from the lights and
fire of the steam-boat. The painting looks like a tunnel of darkness around
the boat with a light at the end of the tunnel. The white of the snow is around
the dark and lets you see the different lightings of the place.
J.M.W. Turner is a fantastic oil and water painter of the romantic era. He
has influence the world of art by introducing Impressionism and the idea of
less detail, better lighting. His works have great meaning and truly shows the
art of landscape paintings. He can catch both the detail of the seen and the
feeling and lighting of a seen. He has influenced me to catch the lighting and
not so much the very specific details. His art brings the feeling to

landscapes. Some landscapes are plain with no feeling. Others may be more
detailed but Turner captures the lighting.
Works Cited
"Joseph Mallord William Turner." Artble.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016.
<http://www.artble.com/artists/joseph_mallord_william_turner>.
"Joseph Mallord William Turner Biography." William Turber. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016.
<http://www.william-turner.org/>.
"JWM Turner." wikipedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016.
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._M._W._Turner#/media/File:Joseph_Mallord_William_
Turner_-_Snow_Storm_-_Steam-Boat_off_a_Harbour%27s_Mouth_-_WGA23178.jpg>.

Prodger, Michael. "JMW Turner, the English Claude." theguardian. N.p., 8 Mar. 2012. Web. 18
May 2016. <http://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2012/mar/08/jmw-turner-englishclaude>.
"Turner." Biography.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016.
<http://www.biography.com/people/jmw-turner-40806#synopsis>.