We usually kick off our cultural year with a pilgrimage to the Print Gallery of the National Gallery of Ireland to enjoy the beautiful watercolours of J.M.W. Turner just as the artist intended – bathed in Dublin’s weak January light.
We were especially looking forward to this year’s exhibition, marking the 120th anniversary of the first showing of Turner’s Watercolours at the Gallery in January 1901, having been bequeathed by English art collector and philanthropist Henry Vaughan (1809–99).
Unfortunately the current pandemic has put the mocklers on all of that. And with galleries shuttered until the end of the month, at least, Turner aficionados will have to wait until January 2022 to experience these beautiful watercolours in person again.
These works, ranging from highly finished watercolours to atmospheric sketches, give a real sense of Turner’s development as an artist, and his enthusiasm for landscape, so we are delighted to see the Gallery bring the experience online in 2021. There are additional opportunities to learn more about Turner’s works, and perhaps glean some new insights that can sometimes be missed or go unnoticed in a real life experience.
Visitors can explore the Gallery’s collection of Turner Watercolours here, while their first Tuesday Talk of the year sees Anne Hodge, Curator of Prints and Drawings, talk about this dramatic scene, which almost doubles as an interesting reflection of the times we live in.
Featured Image: Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775-1851), Passau, Germany, at the Confluence of the Rivers Inn and Danube, 1840. (c) National Gallery of Ireland