Things to See: Rome Part 2

As Part 1 helped show, Rome really was the most gorgeous place. There wasn’t a drop of rain and it was always the right weather to go outside for a walk. There are so many lovely bars, cafes and restaurants everywhere, that getting a drink, meal or an ice cream was always a temptation. And one temptation that was always given in to!

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Things to See: Turner and the Sea

James Mallord William Turner was prodigiously gifted, with a highly prolific output, an unending passion for art, and the unerring desire to keep challenging himself. For all his talent though, he always seemed happiest when capturing the British seas. Therefore, the chance to see his phenomenal nautical work up close at the Turner and the Sea was one I was never going to let pass. 

Turner and the Sea

Greenwich, East London, is filled with maritime history, and it’s also famous for giving its name to the Greenwich Meridian (longitude) and GMT (Greenwich Mean Time). The National Maritime Museum is the perfect place to host an exhibition of JMW Tutner’s work, as well as other notable maritime artists of the time.

I’m familiar with quite a bit of his work, but standing right in front of his paintings you are reminded just how extraordinary his talent was. Also included are work by other artists, including romantic British painter John Constable, Willem van de Velde, Thomas Gainsborough and Claude-Joseph Vernet. But as good as their paintings are, they highlight just what made Turner so memorable, and just why he has left such a legacy.

Fishermen at Sea

Fishermen at Sea was Turner’s first oil painting to be exhibited at the Royal Academy. Just 21 years old at the time, it’s a phenomenal piece of art, majestically capturing the erratic waves, the luminous moon and the fishermen between them. It’s long been my favourite work of his.

Snow Storm – Steam-Boat off a Harbour’s Mouth

Now for the Painter

The Shipwreck

Other highlights that detail the dangerous waves include Snow Storm – Steam-Boat off a Harbour’s Mouth, Now for the Painter and The Shipwreck. Turner also appreciates the beauty in calmer seas. The ones that stand out most to me with that aspect are Rockets and Blue Lights, Keelmen Heaving in Coals by Midnight and The Battle of Trafalgar. 

Rockets and Blue Lights

Keelmen Heaving in Coals by Midnight

The Battle of Trafalgar

But the exhibition wouldn’t have been the same without The Fighting Temeraire. Voted as the most popular painting in Britain in 2005, it is the perfect combination of modernity and tradition that Turner placed so much value in. The HMS Temeraire had played a leading role in Britain winning the Napoleoanic war, and was about to be broken up for scrap. Turner paints it being dragged by a small tug boat, with the symbolsim of being able to go forward but thanks to the glory of the past. The visual metaphor of a glorious sun setting in the background is a beautifully spectacular touch.

turner fighting temeraire

Turner and the Sea is open until 21 April 2014. It’s £10 for a regular ticket but there are different concessions. If you have the chance, you should definitely see it. Beauty is timeless, and with art it dates even less.


Awards: Sunshine Award

Sunshine Award

Yay! Another award. I want to thank Little Write Lies for the nomination. It’s definitely worth checking out her blog. She has a love for writing which is infectious and shines throughout her whole site. Really glad I discovered her work.

To accept the award, I must list 10 things about myself and then nominate 10 other bloggers for the award.

Purple is my favourite colour.

Clerks is my favourite comedy. The Naked Gun Trilogy, Planes, Trains and Automobiles, Withnail and I and Airplane are up there too.

Growing up Gladiators was my favourite TV Show. How can anyone not get pumped up by this theme tune? ­­KAPOW!

I have a fantasy football team which I’ve been doing for the past few years, mostly pretty successful. The one exception was Einstein FC.

The first book I remember leaving a strong impression was The Silver Sword by Ian Serraillier. It’s a great war story, and I would recommend it even now.

I have several books personally signed by Nick Hornby, including High Fidelity.

My favourite dessert is chocolate éclairs.

I’ve never been to Ireland but am hoping to go next year. Croatia and Greece are on my list too.

My favourite painters are Cezanne and J M W Turner

The first band I saw live was Duran Duran. Since then I have seen groups including Depeche Mode, Godhead, U2, White Lies, Girls Aloud, Coldplay and Jay-Z. I’m seeing Godspeed this week too.

And for the second part I thought I’d be a bit different and limit each one to a five word summary/description. In NO particular order.

1. Verbal Spew – Always check out her site

2. Silver Screen Serenade – Knowledgeable, thoughtful, engaging film/TV fan.

3. Marina Kanavaki – Very talented and creative painter.

4. Happiness Secrets – Full of symbolic, meaningful poetry.

5. Michael Piggott – Filled with quality entertainment articles.

6. Leman Shots – Photographer with distinct, creative style.

7. Retiree Diary – A photographer who ‘gets’ nature.

8. Global Girl’s Blog – Food lover; her passion infectious.

9. I See Beauty All Around – Just discovered, big fan already.

10. Tails From Paris – Cartoons. Wonderfully different to others.