A true free radical of his era, J.M.W. Turner (1775-1851) was known as ‘the painter of light’ and was a revelation for the Impressionist movement. This traveller-landscapist’s paintings intensified over time to definitively leave figurative reality behind, offering instead a luminous vision transfigured by nature. A visionary ahead of his time, his art was received with much controversy. In step with his life, his last years were synonymous with self-denial for the benefit of his art, and upon his death he bequeathed over 20,000 works to the British state.