Although born in 1866, this equestrian artist’s main body of work appears to have been done from 1911 until his death in 1939. While he does not seem to have exhibited widely, he had many private commissions, many coming from the cavalry barracks in the area where he lived. He charged 10 pounds for a horse portrait, unless “if particularly hard up or thirsty (he) would accept 5 pounds,” notes “Dictionary of British Equestrian Artists” author, Sally Mitchell. She also states that his likenesses of his subjects in both oil and pastel were considered quite good. One of the artist’s paintings of a horse in a stable is in Fyvie Castle, the museum and gardens operated by the National Trust for Scotland.
This is not your usual portrait of a horse shown in a landscape or in a stable stall. On the back is an extensive inscription: “‘Frizzle’…. Pet of Fire Brigade, Birm(ingham) Central Station, Walter W. Trickett, April 1909.” Frizzle is standing next to a red fire carriage inside the station house. The floor is of old brick. Light comes from high windows as well as two prominently featured light fixtures. This piece shows well Trickett’s style of short brush strokes and subtle and harmonized color palette. This portrait of “Frizzle” is a fine example of the artist’s work. It is signed and dated in the lower left corner.
It is framed in an antique pine frame that has a lot of character; it may be the original. At some time, the frame was stripped, but there are some remnants of the original paint. There is an old crack in this heavy wood frame on the left side, as well as some smaller splits here and there. However, I feel that all of these elements, including some missing parts on the upper left side just add to its antique character. It retains its original gilded slip that has turned a very pretty color of soft gold.
The painting is in its original condition. It might benefit from a light clean.
This is a very charming and unusual commissioned work by a known early 20th century equestrian artist.
It measures 25-1/2 inches wide by 21 inches high, including the frame.
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Portrait of “Frizzle,” the Pet Horse of the Birmingham Fire Brigade, by W. Wasdell Trickett
$395 $465 SALE PENDING
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