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George Stubbs ARA

1724 - 1806

George Stubbs occupies a unique position in the sporting field, he was one of the greatest eiteenth century artists. This may not being due to any privileged artistic instruction, but entirely due to his hard studies of anatomy.

Stubbs first practised as a portrait painter in the north of England. He worked in Wigan in 1744, then in Leeds, and at York from 1745 to 1752, returning to Hull and Liverpool before his visit to Italy in 1754. Meanwhile he was studying anatomy and gave a series of lectures on this subject at York hospital in 1746. His visit to Italy convinced him 'that Nature was and always is superior to Art'.

In the 1790s he enjoyed the patronage of the Prince of Wales and in 1802 he advertised his 'Comparative anatomical exposition of the structure of the human body with that of a tiger and a common fowl', a work which was never completed.

Stubbs approached the painting of horses through the study of their anatomy, showing that he was of the same scientific bent as his contemporary, Joseph Wright of Derby, and his horses are always accurately drawn. His best works exhibit a flowing composition of gently curving lines although he did tend to see his pictures not as a whole but as the accumulation of a number of parts.

Painting

Portrait of a Gentleman upon a Grey Hunter
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Painting

Hunter With Two King Charles Spaniels in a Landscape
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Painting

An Arabian Horse
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