Less famous and dramatic than his British rival, Joseph Turner, John Constable preferred the humble English countryside of his native Stour Valley. In his humble rural paintings, Constable captured his “careless boyhood” on the eve of the Industrial Revolution and froze these scenes in a nostalgic time, creating a much-loved “Constable Country.” Compared to Turner who faced change, Constable turned away and retreated into the past of his boyhood. Even though his carefully delineated and detailed depictions of the Stour Valley, Constable often painted from memory as much as from observation. “Constable Country” is a elegy to a golden past that may have never been.

Also listen to “Romanticism in England, Part One” and “Romanticism in England, Part Two” and “English Romanticism and Turner”

If you have found this material useful, please give credit to Dr. Jeanne S. M. Willette and Art History Unstuffed.
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