The Horses are Coming! To the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts

The Horses are Coming! To the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts

April 13, 2008|By KATHRYN YOUNG / Special To The Herald-Mail

"The Horses are Coming" to the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts April 12 to June 22.

"The Horses are Coming" is a collection of work by 20 artists from the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries, according to Jennifer Smith, acting assistant curator with the museum. Each piece, says Smith, "is an interpretation of the horse."

Former museum director Jean Woods began coordinating and formulating the idea of an exhibit strictly focusing on horses. "Maryland has always been a horse area," said Woods. "So I thought it was long overdue."

Smith, however, designed the layout of the 65 eclectic pieces of artwork - 38 of which are paintings, and 27 sculptures. A public reception for "The Horses are Coming" will be from 2 to 4 p.m. today at the museum, with free pony rides for children at the Hager House.


She says the exhibition has already received a lot of attention and the museum will also be looking at more ways in which the horse "influences our lives."

The museum has scheduled other events to coordinate with the exhibit of horse-themed art. On Sunday, May 18, at 2:30 p.m., Rebecca Pearl will lead an hourlong art demonstration that defines the shape of the moving horse by showing the "Impressionistic effects of light, color, line and texture on the subject," according to Smith.

On Sunday, May 25 at 2:30 p.m., Ann O'Shallie, associate professor and director of equine related therapeutic studies at Wilson College in Chambersburg, Pa., will speak about therapeutic horsemanship.

"We are just so excited to have Ann," says Smith. "This is a great opportunity to explore horses and how they help us and continue to help us."

Photos by Ric Dugan


Charles Gustave Parquet painted "Fox Hunt with Hounds and Emperor Louis VXI," circa 1865 or 1866, depicting how horses were used in fox hunting.

"Horse Allegory" by Georg Navikoff, painted in 1924, "shows horses in mythology not only as beautiful creatures but helpful to man and Greek god, alike," says Jennifer Smith, acting assistant curator at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts.

"Kinscem," a bronze sculpture by Isadore Bonheur, depicts the female race horse that "never lost," notes Smith. "This makes her (Kinscem) a celebrity in herself you didn't just ask for a bronze sculpture, you asked for a bronze 'Kinscem.'

Smith highlighted "The Butterfield Stage Coach" by Marjorie Reed because of the use of color. "The rough brush strokes give the horses liveliness," says Smith.

"Swaps 1957" by John William Orth, circa 1960s, is another great thoroughbred racehorse. Smith saysthe painting "has a dappled effect where the horse is the most prominent part of the painting."

Smith notes the 1921 "Man O'War" by George Ford Morris, a loan from Joseph Szymanski, is "more realistic." Smith said many see Man O'War as the greatest thoroughbred racehorse of all time.

The Herald-Mail Articles