by Max Gillies, contributing writing to Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine
Horses have played a starring role in art from its very beginnings. On the walls of the Chauvet cave complex in southern France—believed to be approximately 30,000 years old—they appear prominently among the animals these prehistoric artists recorded. And of course horses’ dynamism drives forward the procession depicted in the British Museum’s Elgin Marbles (5th century BCE), which originally adorned the Parthenon in Athens.
From the Crusades and Genghis Khan to Columbus and the Wold West, horses have featured in human history every step of the way, universally revered for their speed, power, grace, intelligence, and nobility. When we learn of horses being eaten by famine victims or dispatched to the glue factory, we are instinctively repulsed because they are not merely animals to us: they are somehow a version of our better selves, regardless of whether we have mounted one, or even touched one.
This is an excerpt from “The Timeless Appeal of Horses”. Find the full article in the March / April 2017 Edition of Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine.