Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Jack Russell Terrier (1)

After exploring horses, cats and various inanimate animals like statues, it is with some relief that I am back to dogs. I entered this painting, along with a few other doggies, for a competition yesterday with the theme "favourite subjects". It was nice to find a competition that allowed me to enter what I most like. 

Animal paintings, as a genre, are out of fashion at present and sometimes seem close to the bottom of the artistic "pecking order": I don't know why that should be. Maybe an artistic "establishment" that is based chiefly in London or other big cities: so domestic animals don't really feature very large in their world view. Who knows. It wasn't always so. Edwin Henry Landseer is considered to produce "museum quality" art - the art establishment's primary definition of quality - and he painted little else. Here is his Jack Russell, from 1827
One of the very striking things about looking at his dog paintings is how much the appearance of dog breeds has changed since Landseer's day. The Jack Russell is one breed that still looks much the same. This painting is called "Jock with a hedgehog"; it and others can be viewed on www.wikipaintings.org.

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