Harry Bates

Hounds in Leash


Not on display

Harry Bates 1850–1899
Object: 1160 × 2200 × 1080 mm
Presented by Lord Wemyss 1899

Display caption

The Earl of Wemyss and March commissioned this sculpture in bronze to be placed outside his home, Gosford House in East Lothian, after it was rebuilt. Apart from his interest in field sports, and his career in politics, the Earl was also an amateur sculptor. He and his family were active patrons of modern art. In chosing Bates, he turned to one of the most advanced British sculptors, a former pupil of Dalou and Rodin. Bates, at the end of his short life, was interested in classical subjects, and this athlete echoes models by Michelangelo. It was studied from the life, and one of the Great Danes died while clamped into position.

Gallery label, September 2004

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Catalogue entry

N01767 HOUNDS IN LEASH 1888–9
Inscr. ‘Harry Bates 1889’ b.l.
Plaster, 42×87×42 (107×221×107).
Presented by Lord Wemyss 1899.
Exh: R.A., 1889 (2192).
Lit: Walter Armstrong, ‘Mr Harry Bates’ in The Portfolio, XIX, 1888, p.173; E. J. Winter Johnson, ‘Mr Harry Bates, A.R.A.’ in The Artist, XX, 1897, p.584, repr. p.579; Eric Underwood, A Short History of English Sculpture, 1933, p.117.
Repr: Tate Gallery, Illustrated Catalogue, 1912, p.125.

According to Armstrong, this group of a hunter holding a pair of hounds was intended to be ready for exhibition in 1888, but its execution was delayed through the death of the chief model, a Great Dane, which became affected with paralysis during the sittings. This work, he added, ‘will, I am sure, increase its author's reputation, for it will show that he can combine style with energetic action’.

The bronze was made for Lord Wemyss and was exhibited at the R.A., 1891 (2096). It still stands in the forecourt of Gosford House, East Lothian.

Published in:
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, I


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