English Romantic Painter, 1775-1851, British land- and seascape artist. Born in London the son of a barber, Turner was precociously talented. He entered the RA Schools in 1789, had a drawing exhibited at the academy in 1790, and was elected a full academician in 1802. He became professor of perspective in 1807. A prolific artist of amazing range of subject and style, he began work in water-colours, quickly founding both a reputation and a fortune, which made him independent of changing public taste. His work was not appreciated by everyone, but his supporters included Thomas Lawrence, John Ruskin, and the earl of Egremont. He died in eccentric obscurity under a false name.
the hero of a hundred fights
1800-10 reworked 1847
oil on canvas 91x121cm tate, london