This painting of foxhounds in kennel, almost monumental in scale, caught our eye. Offered by William Secord Gallery in New York City, the composition by a contemporary artist is reminiscent of many we’ve seen by traditionalists such as John Emms (1843−1912) in particular, but the execution veers dramatically from the style of the traditional Masters. We are also reminded of Emms’s work in the very scale of the framed painting: 49-1/2 x 67-1/2 inches; Emms often worked in this large format.
The artist, Christine Merrill, is best known for her commissioned pet portraits, but like many animal artists before her, she also enjoys creating paintings for their own sake, in compositions that range from small sketches to large works. Such is this painting of foxhounds resting in their kennel after the hunt.
Christine includes a silver-banded copper hunting horn, a hunt whip, and the huntsman’s scarlet coat in her painting, suggesting a broader story, but primarily the artist focuses on the hounds themselves. Each hound is unique and individual, most expressing a certain anticipation, as if they were looking up at us as we entered. Others sleep through it all.
“Christine paints in her own unique style of realism,” says William Secord, “rooted in the academic paintings of the eighteenth century.” Contact gallery for more information.
Posted September 14, 2020