Turner by Franny Moyle


The extraordinary life of J. M. W. Turner, one of Britain's most admired, misunderstood and celebrated artists J. M. W. Turner is Britain's most famous landscape painter. Yet beyond his artistic achievements, little is known of the man himself and the events of his life: the tragic committal of his mother to a lunatic asylum, the personal sacrifices he made to effect his stratospheric rise, and the bizarre double life he chose to lead in the last...

Details Turner

Release DateJul 7th, 2016
GenreArt, Biography, Nonfiction, Art History, History, Biography Memoir, European Literature, British Literature, Womens, Autobiography, Memoir, European History

Reviews Turner

  • David
    I started this book only a few days before the sad end to the excruciating 2016 US Presidential Elections, when I felt an urge for reading that engaged the old coconut without touching on any of the many very, very aggravating aspects of modern life. This book filled the bill admirably. Art: Oxycontin without the mess.As a teenager long ago I had even less artistic sensibility than now, if such a thing is possible, but I have a very clear memory ...
  • Nate Jacobsen
    J.M.W Turner was an artistic pioneer witness to dramatic events and revolutions, from Napoleon to the revolution of steam. As a dedicated plein air artist he popularized regions of Britain and the European Continent but was equally able to capture the popular events defining recent English history. As a biography it does an exceptional job of engaging in the details of Turners life. However, I would also recommend it on the basis that it provides...
  • Peter Pinkney
    Turner is probably my favourite artist, and re-watching Mike Leighs brilliant film of his life made me want to read a biography of him. I have two and chose this because it is the most recent.At times it reads slowly, but beautifully describes the times that the great artist lived in. Turner, and other main characters, could come straight from the pages of fiction, they are so quirky. (And would say Dickensian, but I use that description far too ...
  • A Holm
    Non-fiction, scholarly, good explanation of time just prior to Impressionism
  • Margaret
    I have truly learned to appreciate William Turner's art especially in the past several years. There was a time that I thought it was "out there" but that was before I delved seriously into watercolor finding my own way in my art endeavors. Turner often had trouble with harsh critics of his paintings especially in the latter years of his career when his personal vision and creative exploration reached new heights. He was a driven man and I can rel...
  • Patricia
    I had no idea how massively prolific Turner was! Moyle's descriptions of the paintings are necessarily brief but informative. This is an engaging survey of Turner's intellectual passions, technical experiments, and adventurous travels.
  • Michael
    I liked the book chiefly because of the descriptions of Turner's painting techniques and the photos of various paintings. Other than his art, I didn't find Turner's life all that interesting. Perhaps that was because of his single-minded devotion, up to his death, to that art, which caused him to mostly neglect those in his personal life who were not connected to art. Most of his interactions were related to the business of selling his paintings ...
  • Peter
    This book gave a detailed account of Turners life as well as an invaluable insight into the momentous times he lived in. Having read this book, a visit to a Stately Home contemporary to the age he lived in has been brought to life. Encountering gardens designed by people he was associated with and having learned something of what drove and motivated people, Turner included, of that time, through this book I now see this period of history with fre...
  • David
    Turner is a great subject for understanding the evolution of the art world, as he came of age when artists were still dependent on patrons and lived and worked long enough to participate in the rise of dealers. It also helped me understand the importance of landscape painting during its heyday, as, to be honest, I have always thought of those works as dull. You do get the sense that the biography was made much more difficult by the limited amount...
  • Mandy
    Fanny Moyle starts her eminently readable and accessible biography of Turner with his death and then goes back to the beginning of his life to examine how he became the man and artist he ended up being. Its an illuminating, well-researched and detailed book, perhaps more for the general reader than the academic, although she does explore his painting methods in some detail. I particularly enjoyed learning about Turner within his circle and the ar...
  • Karen
    A very thorough biography of Turner and the times in which he painted. His commitment to his art and his prolific pace of work, come across in the book, and there are some interesting details about his personal life. I enjoyed it but found it rather long and at times too detailed for my interest. Although there are some pictures of his work in the book, I felt it would have benefitted from more illustrations. I found myself constantly googling th...
  • Daniel Farabaugh
    This book suffer from too much detail about the boring day to day life of the author. It never was able to give significant weight to his works. Part of the problem was the sheer volume of works which made them blend together.
  • Pip Jennings
    Meticulously researched but Im afraid I found it infinitely tedious. Meticulously researched but I’m afraid I found it infinitely tedious.
  • Johns
    A readable, complete history of a truly historic English artist. The author not only relates interesting facts about this precedent-shattering artist but she also fills in a lot of history that was happening all around Mr. Turner during his life in the first half of the 19th century. J. M. W. Turner shook up the staid and controlled British art market during his lifetime and left the world a large legacy of stunning work.
  • Ophelia Sings
    I've been an admirer of Franny Moyle for some time - her fizzy biography of Constance Wilde and her chronicle of the Pre-Raphaelites are long-standing favourites of mine. In this, her latest life story, Moyle turns her spotlight on the man so admired by Ruskin, the Pre-Raphaelite's champion, and the artist behind Britain's best-loved painting, The Fighting Temeraire. A new biography of JMW Turner is a delicious prospect indeed, and Ms Moyle's tho...
  • Jean Sellars
    Quite possibly the most interesting book I've read in some time. Brilliant!
  • Rick Jones
    I enjoyed this book, and I am wavering between a three and a four. I really knew very little about Turner, and had only a cursory acquaintance with his influence, and this book got me a fair bit down the road to understanding his life and the people and times around him. I appreciate him a lot more now that I read Moyle's book, and maybe that is enough. As an artist though, I wanted more: more discussion of the paintings themselves, and more pict...
  • Eileen Hall
    A wonderful biography of an artist I didn't much care for until recently.I used to think his paintings were just daubs with no context to them.After seeing a documentary and watching Mr. Turner (fictionish I know!) and reading this very informative book, I will look at his work in a different light.Very highly recommended. I was given a digital copy of this book by the publisher Penguin Press via Netgalley in return for an honest unbiased review.
  • nikkia neil
    Thanks PENGUIN GROUP The Penguin Press and netgalley for this ARC.Reads like a novel-biography while being a well-researched fact checked biography. I looked up so many of the painting shown in the book and more. Turner had a amazing life and career
  • Pierke Bosschieter
    What A delight. Meticiously researched, very detailed, but never boring. One of those books you hope will never end. The audiobook was superbly read as well.
  • Merahnaga
    Salah satu buku yang paling aku nikmati. Moley menulis dengan sangat baik tentang Turner dan aku sangat menyukainya. Buku terbaik mengenai biografi seni yang pernah aku baca.
  • Victoria Sadler
    Anything you ever really wanted to know about Turner, how he lived, the people in his life, and the context for the creation of his extraordinary artwork, can all be found in this comprehensive biography from Franny Moyle. Starting with the scandalous circumstance of the artist's death - the poor conditions of his London home and the having shacked up with Mrs Booth - Franny uses this as a starting point - how did England's greatest artist end up...