To want to buy a book showing the work of a single painter, you obviously have to like his work - yet the Royal Academy themselves inexplicably appear to have failed to offer any illustration to show what you are buying. What were they thinking of ? For the benefit of would-be purchasers unfamiliar with KH (a modern British Impressionist), I have remedied this omission myself. I should send them a bill.
Already having some of his other books, I fortunately didn't need any illustration to persuade me to buy this latest volume. We share the same birth year, but one of the many things we do not share is his ability to start careering round the alps between the ages of 77 and 80 in pursuit of Turner. I envy him both that and his talent.
This is not Howard copying Turner - he's just doing his own thing where Turner did his. (A difference - Turner was in his late twenties, Howard in his late seventies !) If you were to ask me whether I would prefer to hang a Turner or a Howard in my house, only cupidity would persuade me to choose the former. For me, Howard is the master of the contre jour, and I wish there were more examples here, but I suspect that there are in fact as many as the conditions allowed. (Venice, the Cornish coast and his massive-windowed London studio offer more opportunities in this respect - see his other books.)
To set the context, the book starts with a 7-page decription of Turner's journey, by a renowned Turner expert [See, for example,[ASIN:1849761523 J.M.W. Turner: The Making of a Master]], with small illustrations of 6 Turner paintings. Thereafter, it's just page after page of Howard paintings and sketches, some showing the same landscape in different lighting conditions, with facing-page commentaries by the artist and his companion. Many painters cannot write to save their lives (why should they ?); but all Howard's books read easily and pleasantly, and this is no exception. Gabuthaler's "travelogue" contribution is no less eloquent, and all the more laudable for his being Swiss.
I was a bit concerned by the publisher's remark about there being "numerous photographs of (KH) at work", which I feared might impinge on the paintings; happily, not so - they are tiny, set above the text on the facing page to the illustrations.
Finally, to learn more of the genesis of the book, visit the web-page of Howard's touring companion - [...] (where you will have to click to allow redirection to the page relating to this book).