As a critic finally acknowledged in 1906, 55 years after his death, "Turner painted not so much objects he saw as the light which played around them." His landscapes and maritime paintings are a blur of color applied with a palette knife, the subjects almost unrecognizable in a scumble of pigment depicting moonlight, firelight, and blazing sunlight.
•The Met is also showing a dream team of Old Master photographers: 13 early practitioners who invented and perfected the medium. Beginning with the first photographers such as William Henry Fox Talbot, Roger Fenton, and Gustave Le Gray, with about a dozen outstanding prints by each, the exhibition showcases later portrait photographers such as Nadar, Édouard Baldus, and Julia Margaret Cameron, up to modernist, midcentury masters such as Henri Cartier-Bresson and Man Ray. You see each photographer's eye for composition as the art form develops from embryo to maturity.