Turner paintings include some of the finest British art ever seen, with JMW (Joseph Mallord William) Turner establishing himself as crucial to the rise of the Romanticist art movement across Britain. The contributions of Turner helped to bring about much greater international recognition and interest in British painters who previously had lagged behind those from France, Italy and Spain in terms of legacy and innovation. Turner's skills were not only technically solid but the artist also helped to bring new ideas into European art through his innovative ideas and it was unusual to see a British artist at this time influencing so many others.
William Turner and John Constable are generally regarded as the best British painters from the 18th and 19th century and had a massive impact in persuading art academics that landscape painting was a skilled and worthwhile approach that was worthy of respect. Previously there had been much less interest in landscape painting and their influence was needed to bring it more into the mainstream alongside accepted alternatives like portraits and religious depictions. John Constable was equally skilled, technically, but was not as innovative and original as JMW Turner which is why the latter's legacy should remain stronger.
Turner paintings such as the scene from Venice included above were in the forms of oil painting and watercolours. Turner produced considerable numbers of paintings in both formats and each get their own specialist exhibitions on occasion, with London unquestionably the best place to visit if you are looking to see the Turner originals in person. The respect given to Turner was underlined in the Turner Prize being set up in his name which rewards groundbreaking and talented young British artists.
Turner's love for landscape painting is shown in the distinct lack of any other style of painting from his entire career, which is also the case with John Constable. Turner spent all his time he had in developing and experimenting within his landscape works to get as good an understanding of light as he could. Turner was particularly interested by the effect of light and also weather on the objects within the scene.
Fighting Temeraire painting by JMW Turner
Fighting Temeraire is the most famous painting from Turner and is a detailed oil on canvas work which portrays a large ship set against a highly stylised background landscape. The full title of the painting is The Fighting Temeraire tugged to her last berth to be broken up, and several other works from Turner that cover seascapes have equally long names which have since been abbreviated for simplicity. It is difficult to find an artist more well known for seascapes than Turner, and he would normally have objects within them such as Warships, rather than just an empty seascape by itself.
Fighting Temeraire benefits from the artist's timing, with this sunset scene enabling Turner to use many of his bright colours that were always loved by any romanticist artist. Turner would concentrate on skies within his paintings to a great level of detail as he knew that these held the key to the balance of most of his paintings and so it was essential that he captured them correctly.
Snow Storm painting by JMW Turner
Snow Storm is a true example of romanticism with the artist's emotions clear to see within the painting, and the finished work looking very different to what the artist would have seen at the time. The full title of the painting was Snow Storm: Hannibal and His Army Crossing the Alps and it can now be viewed in the Tate Gallery, London which holds a great number of his paintings in their permanent collection.
JMW Turner was a classic artist whose original oil paintings are very popular today in the form of reproduction copies for his many fans around Europe and North America. In most cases they will carefull choose the painting which best suits their home and often go for framed art prints, posters or stretched canvases as their preferred art media. In general, giclees are the best for accurately matching the colours used by Turner in his original paintings.
Sunset on Rouen painting by JMW Turner
Sunset on Rouen again takes advantage of this time of day that is so popular with artists because of the opportunities that it brings in terms of colour. Turner was a very open minded person who was more than happy to travel around Europe in pursuit of different scenes to add into his work and Rouen was one such place where he spent time. Few painters at this time would have been as bold as Turner in travelling around like this, but that just underlines his individual character which also meant he carried on consistently with landscape painting when so few others had successfully done the same.
The most famous destination for Turner outside of Britain was Venice where he spent considerable time as he went about following in the footsteps of other Italian artists who had found great inspiration in the architecture and unique character of this romantic city. Aside from his productive time in Venice, Turner made use of key British castles in some of his paintings as well as several seasides too.
Rain Steam Speed painting by JMW Turner
Rain Steam Speed is one of the best known paintings from JMW Turner and features the artist's blurry Romanticist style which leaves an exciting work that accurately gets across the feeling of activity which the artist would have experienced at the time. You can buy your own Rain, Steam and Speed painting to add to your wall from the links included above alongside the image of the work.
Turner paintings can be found with in the Turner Wing in London and this specially dedicated area contains a permanent collection of many of his best works and currently contains predominantly watercolours, but with so much of his career on show right across London it is easily the best place to visit if you want to see his original paintings in person.
Stranded Vessel painting by JMW Turner
Stranded Vessel is shown above and this painting is another example of how the painter used sea related topics passionately with in his work on many occasions and you will see in our gallery that many of his best paintings were seascape works, often covering famous battle scenes featuring large war ships.
British art owes a huge debt of gratitude to William Turner because of the great impact he left right across Europe which showed the potential which existed with in the UK when most artists of importance had come from Italy, France and the Flemish regions. Constable and Turner had now shown that original and high quality paintings could come from Britan and also help to shape future movements with innovative ideas.
Lucerne by Moonlight painting by JMW Turner
Lucerne by Moonlight features a very recognisable style used by Turner in many of his best known works and in some ways there are similarities to Monet's Impression Sunrise with a blurred landscape where objects across the seascape are suggested rather than reproduced exactly and combined with the natural beauty of the scene there is a complete feeling of romance in both.
Lucene by Moonlight offers the artist an opportunity to experiment with his considerable skills in terms of depicting light and it's effect on other objects. The artist would have deliberately selected this time of the day to create this painting knowing that the light conditions would have been right for the finish that he was trying to achieve.
Claude Monet was the true master when it came to experimenting with light and he took initial inspiration when setting out on his impressionist path from the career of Turner. Monet went on to create whole series of paintings which deliberately experimented with light and colour and also looked at how it would influence other objects over time.
Grand Canal Venice painting by JMW Turner
Grand Canal Venice is a very important painting from Turner and represents his time spent in Italy when the lure of exceptional architecture and clear blue skies was enough to bring the artist to this passionate country where he could find many inspirational elements for his work. Turner found this country very suitable to his watercolours and it was here that many of his finest works with in this medium were produced.
The Grand Canal is actually one of the biggest attractions with in Venice, both then and now and this scene also allows the artist to carefully plan the angle from which he depicts the canal so that he can also include important architecture with in the painting as well. It was quite rare for an artist to take the plunge and travel around Europe in search of new influences during the time of Turner and his travels underline his own personal confidence as well as his strong desire to progress his technical skills and innovative ideas as far as he possibly could.
Dogana and Santa Maria Della Salute painting by JMW Turner
Dogana and Santa Maria Della Salute is another masterful work from Turner's Venetian series and again captures a cross canal scene with architecture sat in the backgound in Turner's usual Romanticist style which leaves edges blurred together in a dreamy finish. You can see the Dogana and Santa Maria Della Salute painting above and it is available to buy from the gallery which is linked to through out this website. There is a great collection of Turner's Venice paintings included there for you to enjoy.
JMW Turner would focus on certain key elements included in each of his paintings and firstly there would be a consideration of the reflections of light across the work, particularly when he was painting water in some form, such as canals or seascapes which will naturally spread light around in different directions which is also helpful when trying to add interest to a photograph or painting.
Burning of the Houses of Parliament painting by JMW Turner
Burning of the Houses of Parliament is a historic scene captured by William Turner who was clearly very interested in history as well as understanding the power which could be carried into art by using a well known moment in time as here. War has always been full of emotion and passion and this makes it an ideal topic for art and the political fighting found here serves as an equally useful tool for the artist to make use of.
We hope that you appreciate the fantastic paintings included throughout this website and that we have helped you in some way to understand more about the life and career of this incredible British artist who reputation thankfully remains very strong even today, thanks to the prominence of his work in key London galleries and museums as well as the media driven Turner Prize which was named after him.
There is an impressive array of paintings from the career of Turner and these are regularly exhibited around the UK and America with his oil paintings and watercolours both attracting high levels of interest from landscape art fans. Please see below for a comprehensive list of paintings from his career.
Coastal View at Sunset painting by JMW Turner
View on the Rhine painting by JMW Turner
Shipwreck painting by JMW Turner
Canal Della Giudecca Venice painting by JMW Turner
Ulysses Deriding Polyphemus painting by JMW Turner
Chichester Canal painting by JMW Turner
Study of Sunlight painting by JMW Turner
Venice painting by JMW Turner
Landscape painting by JMW Turner
Dort Packet-Boat painting by JMW Turner
Dunstanburgh Castle painting by JMW Turner
Billiard Players at Petworth House painting by JMW Turner
Conway Castle painting by JMW Turner
Norham Castle painting by JMW Turner
Heath Scene painting by JMW Turner
Plymouth Citadel painting by JMW Turner
Confluence of the Thames and the Medway painting by JMW Turner
Venice Sketch painting by JMW Turner
Battle of Trafalgar painting by JMW Turner
St Catherines Hill painting by JMW Turner
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