Thursday, July 7, 2011

Equus

The Huffington Post singled out this edition of Chaucer's masterpiece in its "Coolest Book Covers 2011: The Year's Best So Far."


Besides the destination, the common denominator among the motley group of pilgrims was that they  traveled by horse. I cop to a mere passing interest in horses, having read Black Beauty as a kid, watched the occasional Derby, and attended the steeplechase race at Montpelier, James Madison's old manse in Orange, VA. But nothing prepared me for the drop-dead gorgeous contents of
The Horse: 30,000 Years of the Horse in Art Its scope is staggering as well, embracing all manner of civilizations and their relationships to this multifaceted animal. You really should explore it for yourself, but here are a few previews.
Horse Stepping on a Swallow, Han Dynasty (25–220 AD)
The Four Horses of St Mark's in Venice, 3–4 century BC
(plundered from Constantinople in the 13th century)
Horse statue designed by Leonardo da Vinci
Kalighat School, Horse Racing in Bengal, c 1830
"Mambrino" by George Stubbs
"Portrait of Sogi" by Kano Motonobu
Alfred Munnings, "Newmarket Start," Paul Mellon Collection

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