Then There Was Light
Turner's iridescent tableaux
In the work of Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775–1851) lies an impact akin to a sudden acquisition of sight. His landscapes and seascapes scorch the eye with such ravishing light and color, with such elemental force, it is as if the sun itself were gleaming out of the frame.
Appropriately known as “the painter of light,” Turner worked in print, watercolor, and oils to transform landscape from serene contemplative scenes to pictures pulsating with life. He anchored his work to the River Thames and to the sea, but in the historical context of the Industrial Revolution, also integrated boats, trains, and other markers of human activity, which juxtaposes the thrust of civilization against the forces of nature.
This book covers Turner’s illustrious, wide-ranging repertoire to introduce an artist who combined a traditional genre with a radical modernism.
Michael Bockemühl (1943–2009) studied art history, philosophy, and ecclesiastical history in Munich and Bochum. He qualified as a professor in 1984 at the Ruhr University, and lectured in the history of the art of Late Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and the early modern age. In 1990 he was awarded a chair in the science of art, aesthetics, and art education by Witten/Herdecke University. His TASCHEN monographs include Rembrandt (1991) and Turner (1991).
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