James Ward Portraits of Blackthorn, a Broodmare, with Old Jack, a Favourite Pony, the Property of E. Mundy, Esq. 1812

Artwork details

Artist
James Ward 1769–1859
Title
Portraits of Blackthorn, a Broodmare, with Old Jack, a Favourite Pony, the Property of E. Mundy, Esq.
Date 1812
Medium Oil paint on wood
Dimensions Support: 705 x 918 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Presented by Paul Mellon through the British Sporting Art Trust 1979
Reference
T02377
Not on display

Display caption

This picture was recorded in Ward's account book as having been commissioned by Edward Miller Mundy of Shipley Hall, Derbyshire. It portrays particular animals he owned - Old Jack, a bay pony, standing on the left, and Blackthorn, a chestnut mare, with a tiny new-born foal on the grass in front of her.
Ward was an ambitious artist who attempted a variety of animal subjects beyond the narrow range of conventional sporting scenes. He was interested in the character of individual animals and used them on occasions in place of people in his compositions. Greatly influenced by Rubens, he seems in his turn to have been a model for Landseer in the manner in which he endowed animals with human emotions.

July 2008

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