George Stubbs (1724-1806), now recognized as one of the greatest and most original artists of the eighteenth century, stands out from other practitioners in the field of animal painting. His most frequent commissions were for paintings of horses, dogs, and wild animals, and his images invariably arrest attention and frequently strike a deeply poetic note.
Stubbs did not emerge as a painter until he was in his mid-thirties, but then his genius flowered astonishingly. He steadily celebrates English sporting and country life and reveals himself—in his “incidental” portraits of jockeys and grooms, for example—as a perceptive observer of different levels of social behavior. Among his many experiments with technique were his chemical experiments with painting in enamels, first on copper and later on earthenware “tablets,” manufactured for him in Wedgwood's potteries.
This is the first full catalogue of Stubbs's paintings and drawings. Along with the full catalogue entries, the book offers a lengthy study of Stubbs's art and career.
Published for the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art