CON­TEM­PO­RARY A R T I S T I C E V I D E N C E FROM AMER­ICA AND THE IS­LANDS

EQUUS - - Insights Conformati­on -

Draw­ings and paint­ings of Colo­nial Era horses are not com­mon—they were sel­dom ren­dered per­haps be­cause the horses were ev­ery­where and thus did not seem a re­mark­able or exciting sub­ject for artis­tic ef­fort. Where they did ren­der them, artists gen­er­ally tried to do it re­al­is­ti­cally—and this helps the stu­dent of his­tory, be­cause the pic­tures are ob­vi­ously not those of Thor­ough­breds, which are much taller and rang­ier than horses of Hobby ex­trac­tion. Well-fed Hob­bies

Au­thor’s ren­di­tion of a de­tail from “View of Bos­ton,” by an anony­mous artist, dated about 1780. Note the size of the rider com­pared to that of the horse. (The Met­ro­pol­i­tan Mu­seum of Art) and Pac­ers pre­sented a round-bod­ied and rather mus­cu­lar con­for­ma­tion. Typ­i­cally, colonists nei­ther docked their horse's tails nor roached or braided their thick manes. As they went at an easy am­bling pace, ladies rode them sidesad­dle; some­times the artist specif­i­cally shows the mbling or ac­ing ction of he legs. RSE D RIDER, a 1780 "THE END OF THE HUNT" (DE­TAIL) "T TW De­tail from “The Res­i­dence of David Twin­ing in 1787,” by Edward Hicks. (The Abby Aldrich Rock­e­feller Folk Art Col­lec­tion, Williams­burg, Vir­ginia)

“The End of the Hunt,” dated about 1770, was painted by an anony­mous artist. In this en­larged de­tail, the rider in the cen­ter has “come a crop­per” over a rail fence, while the hunts­man in the lead on the gray sounds his horn. Note the nat­u­ral tails, arched necks, punchy body form and small size of the horses. There were no Thor­ough­breds in Vir­ginia at this time, so wealthy plan­ta­tion own­ers hunted on the live­stock that was avail­able. (Na­tional Gallery of Art) PLAN­TA­TION HORSE

Au­thor’s ren­di­tion of a de­tail from “Cut­ting Cane in the Ber­mu­das,” 1823, by an anony­mous artist. As he sits atop his small, speedy horse, the sugar plan­ta­tion over­seer gives in­struc­tion to the head­man of a slave gang. This image pro­vides an idea of the type of ex­port (Hobby x An­daluce–o = Nar­ra­gansett Pacer) pro­duced by Rhode Is­land stock pro­duc­ers such as Thomas Haz­ard.

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