Turner and the Sea

Turner & the Sea

  1. Christine Riding
  2. Richard Johns
  • ISBN 9780500239056
  • 29.50 x 23.50 cm
  • Hardback
  • 288pp
  • 225 Illustrations, 222 in colour
  • First published 2013

This beautifully illustrated book brings together many of Turner’s most celebrated seascapes, from his early Academy paintings to the compelling and provocative subjects he produced in the final years of his life

‘A major analysis of the work of both Turner himself and of maritime art in the 18th and 19th centuries … this cannot be bettered’ – The Artist
‘Encyclopaedic … a lavish publication’ – Apollo

The book reveals the full extent of the artist’s engagement with the sea, foregrounding important but rarely seen paintings and throwing new light on some of his iconic works, including The Wreck of a Transport Ship, The Battle of Trafalgar, and The Fighting 'Temeraire'

Turner and the Sea

In an age of global naval warfare, rapid technological change, and increased travel, his ceaselessly creative response to contemporary maritime affairs helped to redefine Britain’s cultural relationship with the sea. The authors examine the many ways in which Turner responded to the maritime art of the past while challenging his audience with new ways of representing the sea; whether at the Royal Academy, in his own purpose-built gallery, or as a leading figure within a highly evolved print culture.

The book reveals how Turner first established his credentials as a painter of the sea against a rich tradition of marine painting, exemplified during the previous two centuries by Willem van de Velde the Younger and Claude-Joseph Vernet. It examines the artist’s competitive response to the work of his contemporaries, including John Constable, Augustus Wall Callcott, Richard Parkes Bonington, and Clarkson Stanfield, and explores the complex legacy of his seascapes through the maritime subjects of later British, European, and American artists.

Published to coincide with a major touring exhibition organized by Royal Museums Greenwich, Turner and the Sea is the first study to explore 
the full breadth of Turner’s lifelong preoccupation with the sea.

Christine Riding is Senior Curator and Head of Arts at the National Maritime Museum. She was previously Curator of Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-century British Art at Tate Britain, and was Deputy Editor of Art History (The Journal of the Association of Art Historians).
Richard Johns is a Lecturer in the History of Art at the University of York. He was previously Curator of Art (pre-1800) at the National Maritime Museum. He has written on various aspects of art in Britain during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and is the co-author, with James Davey, of Broadsides: Caricature and the Navy 1756–1815.