Turner exhibition in The Netherlands

Stormy sea with blazing wreck
I like going to an exhibition, and going to a lecture before so you know more and see more at the actual exhibition makes it extra special.

Last Saturday my mother and I went to Zwolle, where there is half of the great Turner exhibition in The Netherlands. The other half is in another museum in the town of Enschede. 

The lecture we went to hear was organized by an art-history academy, who also offer courses and guided tours through museums. It was the first time I attended one of these lectures, but I really enjoyed it.

Turner showed he had talent when he was really young. When he was 14, he entered the Royal Academy to be trained. His strength was perspective and first he started as an architectonical painter. In those days historical paintings were considered the most important; paintings with Biblical or historical scenes. Turner however painted landscapes and seasights and when he did paint a historical painting, the atmosphere was more important than the story. Emotions were almost more important than facts.
Seascape with distant coast
Later in his life his painting style changed. He painted more loosely, vaguely. Not because his eyesight or his mind were gone, but because he was one of the few painters who managed to let go of conventions when he was older. Only Titian and Rembrandt were able to do the same thing.

Turner is the inspiration for many modern artists and it is safe to say that many of the later art movements could not have developed the way they did, if Turner had not been there.

This was told at the lecture and it was illustrated with his paintings. Later that afternoon when we saw the paintings for real, we recognized many things, it was really amazing.

The exhibition is called: Turner, Beauty and danger. Turner and the tradition of the sublime. They devided the paintings into the elements involved. In Zwolle they had the paintings with water and fire, earth and air are in Enschede.

I loved how they combined the amazing paintings by Turner with the painters who were inspired by him. You could really see how much of an inspiration Turner still is.
Dutch painter Armando (1929-) was also inspired.
I love Turner’s work, and I hope I will be able to see the other half of the exhibition, it would be a shame if I would not see it.

But even with only half the paintings, we had a great day! 

More information about the exhibition in De Fundatie in Zwolle and Rijksmuseum Twenthe in Enschede can be found HERE


  1. I love Turner's paintings. How lucky that you got to see part of this exhibition. Hope you get to see the rest!

    1. Yes, seeing the paitings in reality was amazing, they were even more beautiful than in a book. (sometimes it is the other way around)
      I also hope I'll be able to go to Enschede (where the other half is), I will definately share my experience if I do.

      Kind regards,


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