A world class exhibition pays tribute to Turner, Britain’s favourite painter
The monumental Chiostro del Bramante (Cloister of Bramante), a striking Renaissance building just a minute away from Piazza Navona, plays host to the first Rome exhibition dedicated exclusively to the work of Joseph Mallord William Turner. Known for his expressive landscapes and turbulent seascapes, many of which are infused with literary or historical allusions, Turner has profoundly influenced several generations of artists, including Claude Monet, Vincent Van Gogh, Edgar Degas, Paul Klee, Wassily Kandinsky and Gustav Klimt. Together with Constable, he was an influential exponent of Romanticism, an art movement from the late 18th- to the mid-19th century that emphasised an emotional response to nature.
Described as the “Father of Modern Art” by John Ruskin, Turner often shocked his contemporaries with his loose brushwork and vibrant colour palette while portraying the development of the modern world unlike any other artist at the time. He travelled abroad extensively, tending to work in the open air during the warmer months and spending the winter in his studio working from sketches and memory. After Turner’s death in 1851, the contents of his studio became the property of Britain.
Known as the “Turner Bequest”, the collection comprises nearly 300 oil paintings and around 30,000 sketches and watercolours, including 300 sketchbooks, most of which are housed in the Clore Gallery at Tate Britain (London). Divided into six sections, the display features a collection of more than 90 works, including sketches, studies, watercolours, drawings and a selection of oils never shown before in Italy, all displayed in chronological order to document the evolution of Turner’s style.