A painter of light and water

(Mostly about art.)

A wonderful, somewhat mysterious, image playing with light and water:


Reminiscent of the paintings and water-colors of J.M.W. Turner. In fact, this is a photo (from the back, through blue glass) of bottles on the shelves at the restaurant Reposado in Palo Alto.

The larger picture:


(Photo by Ned Deily.)

Now on Turner, from Wikipedia:

Joseph Mallord William Turner, RA (baptised 14 May 1775 – 19 December 1851) was an English Romantic landscape painter, water-colourist, and printmaker. Turner was considered a controversial figure in his day, but is now regarded as the artist who elevated landscape painting to an eminence rivalling history painting. Although renowned for his oil paintings, Turner is also one of the greatest masters of British watercolour landscape painting. He is commonly known as “the painter of light” and his work is regarded as a Romantic preface to Impressionism. Some of his works are cited as examples of abstract art prior to its recognition in the early twentieth century.

Here’s Turner’s Sunrise with Sea Monster of 1845:


(in yellow rather than blue).

[Addendum 12/16: Turner is in the news, thanks to the new film Mr. Turner. From the NPR website yesterday, “Timothy Spall Takes On Painter J.M.W. Turner, A ‘Master Of The Sublime’ “:

Before he could play British artist J.M.W. Turner, actor Timothy Spall first had to learn how to paint; over the course of two years, Spall took private fine art lessons from London artist Tim Wright.

“The goal was to imbue myself in all of the disciplines and all of the different things that Turner would’ve known,” Spall tells Fresh Air‘s Terry Gross. He had no hope of becoming as good as Turner — “that’s like being told to become as good as Einstein after you’ve done Sudoku,” he says — but the hard work paid off: Spall has won best actor awards from the New York Film Critics Circle and the Cannes Film Festival for his role in Mr. Turner.

The film, directed by Mike Leigh, follows Turner from his early 50s to his death in 1851 at the age of 76. The artist’s later landscape and seascape paintings are now revered, but were radical for their time.

“I suppose you would regard him as one of the greatest landscape painters of all time and a unique artist because he was a master of the sublime,” Spall says. “… The sublime … was something that tried to capture the beauty of nature, as well as its terror and its horror.”]

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