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The Incomparable Horse-Inspired Art of George Stubbs

  George Stubbs was the son of a leather-dresser (also known as a currier) and was born in Liverpool in 1724. Though he spent the initial years of his young adulthood learning his father's trade, by the age of 15, he knew he had a passion for painting. His father's resistance to the idea was quickly quelled, and George was given an apprenticeship with a notable local painter. The apprenticeship didn't last long, and George was thereafter a self-taught artist. 

His passion for art and nature eventually collided in the most perfect of ways, circling around his love of horses, more specifically, racehorses. He was enthralled by their energy, elegance, and incredible physique. And his fascination showed in his artwork, which captured every fine detail of these poised and powerful creatures. Stubbs remains one of the most famous horse painters of the 18th-century art movement. Here are some of his most inspiring and captivating equestrian engravings and artwork.

1. Whistlejacket, 1762

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Whistlejacket, 1762

(By Sailko, Wikimedia Commons)  

2. Gimcrack on Newmarket Heath, with a Trainer, a Stable-lad, and a Jockey, 1765

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Gimcrack on Newmarket Heath, with a Trainer, a Stable-lad, and a Jockey, 1765

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

3. The Countess of Coningsby in the Costume of the Charlton Hunt, 1760

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, The Countess of Coningsby in the Costume of the Charlton Hunt, 1760

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

4. A Horse Frightened by a Lion, 1770 

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, A Horse Frightened by a Lion, 1770

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

5. Pumpkin with a Stable Lad, 1774

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Pumpkin with a Stable Lad, 1774

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

6. A Saddled Bay Hunter, 1786

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, A Saddled Bay Hunter, 1786

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

7. Skyscraper, 1790

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Skyscraper, 1790

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

8. Portrait of a Huntsman, 1768

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Portrait of a Huntsman, 1768

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

9. A Bay Hunter With Two Spaniels, 1777

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, A Bay Hunter With Two Spaniels, 1777

(By Xennex, WikiArt)

10. Lord and Lady in a Phaeton, 1787

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Lord and Lady in a Phaeton, 1787

(By Sailko, Wikimedia Commons)  

11. Baronet, 1794

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Baronet, 1794

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

12. Horse Attacked By a Lion, 1762

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Horse Attacked By a Lion, 1762

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

13. Two Shafto Mares and a Foal, 1774

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Two Shafto Mares and a Foal, 1774

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

14. A Grey Horse, 1793 

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, A Grey Horse, 1793

(By Xennex, WikiArt)

15. Mares and Foals in a River Landscape, 1763-1768

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Mares and Foals in a River Landscape, 1763-1768

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

16. Laetitia, Lady Lade, 1793

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Laetitia, Lady Lade, 1793

(By Xennex, WikiArt)  

17. Eclipse 

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Eclipse 

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

18. Firetail, 1773

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Firetail, 1773

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

19. Lustre held by a Groom, 1762

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Lustre held by a Groom, 1762

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

20. Hambletonian 

Best horse-inspired paintings by English artist George Stubbs who influenced 18th century romanticism, Hambletonian

(By George Stubbs, Wikimedia Commons)  

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