Take a Turner with the Tate

5th December 2003 at 00:00
Tate Britain's Turner and Venice exhibition, running until January 11 (www.tate.org.uk), is a feast of misty light and colour. It includes evocative watercolours that Turner knew would not be appreciated in his own time and therefore never exhibited. Even the two paintings that have been reassessed by Ian Warrell, curator of the exhibition, as more likely to be of Portsmouth than La Serenissima, are enough to inspire dreams of getting away.

Now the Tate, with the Magic Travel Group, has developed a city break that follows in the artist's footsteps. Visitors will receive a Venice itinerary devised by art expert Simon Wilson, the former communications curator for Tate Modern and Tate Britain and author of The Tate Gallery Illustrated Companion. Using this, they can, for example, stand on the exact spot where Turner stood to paint "The Bridge of Sighs, Ducal Palace and Custom House, Venice: Canaletti Painting".

"Few visitors to Venice bother to put themselves in Turner's place to access this keynote view," says Mr Wilson, and there are directions to many more, such as a "Turner stroll" through the Zattere district of the city.

Nor is the modern forgotten as the itinerary also guides visitors to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, which contains examples of almost every modern art movement, including Picasso, Pollock, Mir" and Kandinsky, as a counterpoint to Venice's Renaissance museums and churches. Also included in the visitor pack are watercolours and a sketchbook of postcards, so you can interpret Turner's views in your own way. And for those who want even more information, specialist art tours guided by Tate experts are planned. Other destinations under the Tate umbrella include Rome, Barcelona, Lisbon and Lanzarote.

A two-night break in Venice costs from pound;395 per person, including bed and breakfast, return flights from Gatwick, passes to the executive lounge at Gatwick, water-taxi transfers and the Tate pack, for departures from January 2. Details: 0870 888 0222, or www.magictravelgroup.co.uk.

Travel pages are Edited by Renata Rubnikowicz

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