Painted in 1798, the Buttermere Lake, Cumberland, a Shower is a work by the English artist Joseph Mallord William Turner. It is the first canvas in which Turner renders a rainbow, but this would become a recurring subject in his artistic production.
This oil painting was first shown at the Royal Academy. It was part of a series of works that Turner did, based on the landscapes of Northern England. He had traveled around that area the year before and made several sketches which later became oil and watercolor paintings. The choice to render a lunar rainbow shows the Romantic style of the artist, for in the Romanticism the paintings tried to express the magnitude and the “Sublime” of nature. Other Romantic artists also depicted lunar rainbows, such as Caspar David Friedrich in his painting Mountain Landscape With Rainbow.
The Buttermere Lake, A Shower shows a lake surrounded by mountains. On the bottom left corner, there’s a hill which its tones differ from the ones of the other mountains. It is darker than the rest of the composition and also presents more shades of brown mixed with the grey. In the lake, there is something that seems to be a boat with people in it. The reflected moon in the Lake’s waters is subtle due to the apparently cloudy night.
The rainbow occurs on the right side of the canvas. However, the moon is practically centralized. In the background, there is an area on the ground that is entirely illuminated by the moonlight. This creates a central area of clear hues. The color palette he used here is primarily of tints of grey. The element on the left, a mountain that extends itself to the center of the composition, has warmer shades and it finds a clear yellowish variant as it gets to the central area.
This work shows a phase in Turner’s production in which he is starting to dissolve the outlines of the elements, but he still maintained a realistic approach to the rendering. It looks as if he decided to keep the defined shapes on the bottom part of the painting and softened them on the upper.
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Important Notes About Your Painting:
If you have any request to alter your reproduction of Buttermere Lake: A Shower, you must email us after placing your order and we'll have an artist contact you. If you have another image of Buttermere Lake: A Shower that you would like the artist to work from, please include it as an attachment. Otherwise, we will reproduce the above image for you exactly as it is.
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