Transciption Project: Interpreting Turner
In this project we were given the challenge of transcribing works from the National Gallery into a more contemporary context. During a lecture there I became particularly interested in semiotics. Turner's paintings became the centre of my project, particularly his use of colour and light, and through observation I found a semiotic link between Man and God or Man and Nature.
I chose a view of Petersham from Richmond Hill as my subject. Turner painted this local view near me and so therefore this established a hidden deeper link between his work and mine. In the work produced I have paid great attention to the effects of colour and have somewhat heightened contrasts between them in a non naturalistic Turner-inspired way.
I have tried to use colour as an underlying way of symbolising God in nature with Man represented by two boats. This was done through the use of thin washes of colour blended wet on wet steadily which added certain luminosity. I wanted to give the viewer a sense of man being surrounded by beauty, that is to say God. I drew the colour together with the use of pen and oil pastel in a way that was inspired by the drawings of Frank Auerbach, made and exhibited at the National Gallery. I was inspired by these, as although using a more modern use of colour, to me these show the same fearless use of colour that Turner used during his era. Concepts of The Sublime and specifically the work of Caspar David Friedrich may be areas of future interest and research.