T02363 ARAB MARE AND FOAL, WITH ATTENDANT, BY A RUINED TEMPLE c.1835
Oil on canvas, 19 1/8 × 26 1/2 (48.5 × 67.5)
Presented by Mr Paul Mellon KBE through the British Sporting Art Trust 1979
Prov: ...; L. F. McCardle, Sheffield Park, Sussex; Richard Green, from whom purchased by Mr Mellon 1971.
Exh: Annual Exhibition of Sporting Paintings, Richard Green 1971 (15, repr.).
Lit: Egerton, 1978, p.319, no.348.
Like several other artists who painted Arabian bloodstock, Laporte sometimes added imaginary ‘eastern’ backgrounds to suggest the ‘Arabia’ from which the Arab horse was originally imported into England. Here the young attendant's costume and the ruins, tent and palm trees in the background are only moderately fanciful; in other paintings, Laporte introduces the sphinx, pyramids and camels.
Two similar paintings by Laporte remain in the Mellon Collection: ‘A Mameluke purchasing an Arab Stallion from a Horse Dealer’ and ‘Grey Arab Mare and Foal with an Arabian Peasant Family’ (Egerton, 1978, p.318, nos. 246–7). A date c.1835 is suggested for all three as Laporte was at that time painting Arab horses presented to William IV (died 1837); three such subjects were engraved and published in the Sporting Magazine, CXXIII, July 1840.
The Tate Gallery 1978-80: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1981