Book of the horse book cover
The Book of The Horse: Horses in Art by Angus Hyland and Caroline Roberts | Softcover | 160 pages | Release Date: October 2018 | Laurence King Publishing | $15.99 | laurenceking.com and other online booksellers

Enjoy more than 100 paintings of horses, from a diverse selection of artists.

“Horses represent duty, but, just as importantly, they represent freedom. It is said that thundering along at full pelt on the back of a horse is the nearest thing to flying that humans can experience.” —Excerpt from The Book of The Horse: Horses in Art

Flip open the cover of this small softcover book and the first thing a reader sees is a photograph of an artist at work on a portrait of a woman on a horse. But the woman, in full English attire, is seated in a saddle on a sawhorse. The result, shown later in the book, is an impeccable portrait by the artist Alfred Munnings. He painted the portrait of Margaretta Park Frew during winter, when riding outdoors was impossible. But he had already painted the horse and seamlessly added her to the scene. It is one of several unique stories behind works of art featured in the book.

Much of the book is simply artwork accompanied by the title, artist’s name and date. Some are modern, some abstract, some realistic. They can be stunningly beautiful, humorous, mystical and even childlike. The artists are as varied as Pablo Picasso children’s book illustrator Arthur Rackham, renowned equine artist George Stubbs and contemporary Western artist Mary Ross Buchholz.

The breadth of the works makes readers realize how much the horse has impacted and inspired artists for centuries. Anyone who loves horses and appreciates art will treasure this book.

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