The new exhibition at Tate Britain celebrates one of the best loved of all British artists, the landscape painter, John Constable. In his own lifetime, Constable was constantly struggling to catch up with his great rival, J. M. W. Turner, whose astonishing fluency he could never match.
Turner has maintained his fame, but, among the British at least, Constable is now more intimately loved. People talk of the "Constable country" in Suffolk that he made his own artistically, and the images he created appear on calendars, kitchen towels, and place mats. You don’t have to be an intellectual to love Constable’s work - in fact, it is probably better if you aren’t.