Painting Set Free


The Selvedge Winter Fair is over but there are still plenty of reasons to plan a trip to London. Slightly off the topic of textiles but definitely filed under "inspiration" is the current exhibition Late Turner – Painting Set Free at Tate Britain, (until 25 January 2015). The exhibition has been the subject of rapturous reviews– according to Guardian art critic Jonathan Jones “The twilight of the gods has come to Tate Britain.”  So allow plenty of time to worship in room after room of dazzling canvasses and watercolours. Towards the end of the exhibition the images themselves begin to dissolve into barely contained light and colour. Which is why a visit really is worth the effort. Trying to capture these works in other forms is as futile as carrying water in cupped hands. Turner is a printer’s nightmare – reproductions that do justice to the originals simply don’t exist and it’s only marginally better online. Even the most committed souvenir seeker would be advised to forgo the fridge magnets and try to let memory alone do the work of recalling these paintings. To add another layer to the experience you could book tickets to see Mike Leigh's film Mr Turner.  Either way, take this chance to rediscover a master. You’ll leave Tate Britain with a glow and find yourself gazing upwards – searching for a Turner sky over the Thames. regulus_n00519_9blog
Top image: The Blue Rigi, JMW Turner, 1841-2, Tate
Regulus, JMW Turner, 1837, Tate

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