Curator James Hamilton on "Making Painting"

Turner Contemporary
Jan 24, 2014 4:24PM

Making Painting: Helen Frankenthaler and JMW Turner explores the concept that, though working on different continents in different centuries, JMW Turner and Helen Frankenthaler share fundamental qualities in their use of paint and colour, form and narrative, and in their understanding of landscape.

The exhibition is devised and curated by Turner scholar James Hamilton, whose writings on nineteenth and twentieth century art have explored the continuing resonance of Turner's life and work across the past two hundred years. Mr Hamilton explains the ethos behind the bringing together of two seemingly disparate artists:

“This exhibition encourages us all to rely not on what we might know but on what we can see, and as far as possible to throw off the burden of art history. It is the excitements of this conjunction between a Romantic nineteenth-century Briton and an Abstract Expressionist twentieth-century American that the exhibition seeks to evoke, revealing the fellowship that the two artists share in paint across their temporal divide, and the vibrant correspondences which uncover something of the timeless cerebral foundations of landscape art. These two artists could only have met and talked in our imaginations: so bringing their work together takes imagination just one small step further towards reality and allows us to examine values common to both. By exploring two individuals’ attitude to landscape painting across the centuries, this show takes us into the fourth dimension: time.”

Making Painting: Helen Frankenthaler and JMW Turner opens to the public on Saturday 25 January 2014 and will run to 11 May 2014.

Explore the exhibition on Artsy.

Turner Contemporary