With Scott & Fowles, London;
With Wildenstein, New York and London;
With Frost & Reed, London;
Acquired by the present collector in the 1950s.
By 1911, Munnings had settled in Cornwall, near Lamorna. Munnings wrote of his acommodations, "My studio and stable were all in one: the studio, a large converted loft with a skylight, was above the the stables." Munnings engaged as his groom a seventeen year old named Ned Osborne, who he described as a "primitive Cornish youth, a simple soul, who grew into a useful combination of groom-model, and posed for many a picture." He featured in almost all of Munning's hunting pictures from this period up until the First World War and it seems probable that he is the model in this work. Munnings wrote of him, "He had the right coloured face and figure for a scarlet coat and black cap. Often did this patient fellow sit as a model for me." Sir Alfred Munnings, An Artist's Life, Bungay, 1950, p. 272-3.
Having had a successful exhibition at the Leicestershire Galleries in the spring of 1913, Munning's purchased, in Ireland, a grey mare who was six years old and over 15 hands tall. She proved to be an excellent model for many of Munning's Cornwall paintings and is most likely the horse we see depicted here. Munning's depicted his grey mare in his other Cornwall picture, "The Whip: Trevelloe Wood, Cornwall", which is dateable to the same period and shares the same warm palette of autumnal hues of gold yellows, reds and burnt umbers. Munnings was fascinated by the effects of light's reflection, and this painting is a glorious testament to his experimention in this realm . The coat of the grey mare absorbs and reflects the light and shadows of this autumnal forest setting. Munnings' luminous composition creates a sense of serenity.
This work will be included in Lorian Peralta-Ramos's forthcoming Munnings catalogue raisonné.
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