THIS WRITING LIFE: Going Horsey Ga-Ga

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Having been genetically programmed from conception to be horse-mad, it’s little wonder I have lots of horsey things. Figurines, stuffed toys, books, photos, paraphernalia and memorabilia from my riding days, stationery, jewellery. If it’s horsey, my brain automatically says WANT.

The other day, while I was searching for something else on the computer, I came across a weird file. What did it contain? Photos of equestrian statues and other horse figures. Because, well, why wouldn’t you take photos of horse statues on your travels?

Doesn’t everyone?

I have a book to write and can’t spend an hour going silly-ga-ga over horse pictures. Except that was kind of what I did, and I excused myself the indulgence by deciding that:

1/. Horses are clearly a writing inspiration and I should look at them often, and that includes photos of stone and bronze ones.

2/. A post featuring a few of these photos would send blog viewers into raptures and everyone would love me and buy lots of my books, and then I could go on more travels and take even more pictures of horse statues.

See? You can justify anything if you try hard enough.

So, given points 1 and 2 above, I’d better get sharing and ensure that my gawking time was not all wasteful procrastination.

Gird your loins and prepare to be wowed. No, seriously. Some of these are brilliant, I promise!

First up, our very own Man with a Donkey memorial in the Gallipoli Memorial garden, near Melbourne’s Shrine of Remembrance.

Man with a Donkey memorial

Richard the Lionheart in front of Parliament, London. So romantic.

Richard the Lionheart, Parliament, London

The fellow is outside of the medieval village and abbey of Conques in southern France. Fantastic place to visit.

Conques Horse Statue

Hay bale art from the 2012 Lantern Festival at Tarrington, western Victoria. If you’re ever in the area in late November this is a must-see. Huge fun.

Hay Bale Art, Tarrington, Victoria

Ah, Versailles. Not much more you can say other than it’s stunning.

Versailles

Horsies in the Tower of London

Tower of London

The Cervantes monument, Madrid, featuring Don Quixote and sidekick Sancho Panza.

Cervantes monument, Madrid

The stunning Fountaine Bartholdi in the Place de Terreaux, Lyon, France. Love this.

Fountaine Bartholdi , Lyon

Superstar racehorse Black Caviar’s compression suit, on display at Equitana in Melbourne in 2012.

racehorse Black Caviar’s compression suit

Isn’t this statue wonderful? It’s The Young Man and the Horse by Heinz Schwartz, and is located on Lake Geneva.

Young Man and the Horse by Heinz Schwartz

The Louvre is full of horses. This is just one.

Louvre statue

Part of the Millennium Monument in Budapest. The sculptures are amazing.

Millennium Monument in Budapest

The 14th century knight Bertrand de Guesclin, galloping on his horse, Caen, France. Fantastic statue.

Bertrand de Guesclin, Caen

Jeanne d’Arc (Joan of Arc), also in Caen.

Jeanne d'Arc, Caen

This lovely statue – Amazone by Louis Tuaillon – is in Berlin’s Tiergarten.

Amazone by Louis Tuaillon

And lastly, my absolute freaky favourite, Czech artist David Cerny’s surreal statue of King Wenceslas riding a dead horse, suspended inside the Lucerna Palace in Prague.

King Wenceslas riding a dead horse

Hope you enjoyed this sample of horsey statue photos from my collection. There are many more. A scary amount, in fact. I can’t help it. I just adore these things!

Have you seen any weird or wonderful horse statues? I’d love to know so I can add them to my bucket list.

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16 thoughts on “THIS WRITING LIFE: Going Horsey Ga-Ga

  1. AvatarTricia

    A fabulous collection of photos Cathryn. Sadly I don’t have any to share but I enjoyed looking at yours. Frogs are my thing. I don’t have many photos but lots of froggy things! Thanks for sharing. Cheers, Tricia

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      My mum collected froggy things, Tricia. No idea why. She just liked them. And let’s face it, they are cute. You’ll have to share pics one day on a blog.

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      Oh, I’d forgotten about poor Hot Chocolate. I should have included a pic of him too.
      The poor thing is still very flat. I really must repair him.

  2. AvatarHelen

    Oh Cathryn you do make me smile no wonder I love your stories so much 🙂

    Sadly I don’t have any of these types of photos but I will be on the look out next time I am out and about and will send it to you 🙂

    Have Fun
    Helen

    And yes a photo of Hot Chocolate would have been nice yes he needs to be repaired 🙂

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      Thanks Helen!!

      I promise to get onto sorting Hot Choc. Although I’m not actually sure where he’s hiding. I’m mid book and my office is a bit of a disaster zone at the moment. Oops.

  3. AvatarAnna Campbell

    Wow, these ARE fabulous, Cathryn! Thanks so much for putting them up. Perhaps you can do a follow-up. I’m always happy to look at art works featuring horses. Some of my faves are the horses in St. Mark’s in Venice. The copies on the outside are OK, but the REAL ones taken from the hippodrome in Constantinople which are inside in the museum just take your breath away.

    I love the modern art horses you’ve featured. There’s something about a horse that really gives itself to slightly abstract sculpture, isn’t there? There’s a wonderful one in the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra. I’ll see if I can find the photo.

    Which makes me think of those wonderful Tang Dynasty horses too. Oh, too many!

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      Oh, I completely forgot about St Marks! Bugger. Not to worry, as you say, Anna, I can always do a follow up.

      I love all sculpture, really, not just horse ones. Especially big and touchable things. There’s something really satisfying about running your hand over a sculpture or being able to interact with it. Even that steel diamond chain in the Sculpture Garden at the National Gallery is cool thanks to all the reflections and light shifts.

      Did you watch Andrew Graham-Dixon’s Art of China series? Amaaaaazing. My bucket list turned even more enormous watching that.

      1. AvatarAnna Campbell

        No, I didn’t. I think that’s the first of his I’ve missed. His Art of Russia and Art of Germany are both brilliant. Made me want to get on a plane and go and see the stuff he discussed. Actually Art of Spain was great too. I love his programs. There’s another guy called Jaroslav Kowareczek (?) who also does absolutely brilliant art shows. There’s a wonderful Dark Ages one he did that I’ve watched about four times. He did an Art of Spain too. I’ll see if I can get his right name.

        1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

          Art of Spain was FANTASTIC! And did you see his cooking show with Georgio Locatelli around Sicily? Georgio cooked and Andrew talked art. Brilliant.

          I haven’t seen Art of Germany or Art of Russia. Will be searching the Arts channel for those. His shows are so insightful. Ta!

          1. AvatarAnna Campbell

            First time I saw him was a history of English art which was wonderful. Haven’t seen that one in years – the others seem to be on fairly high rotation on the Arts Channel. What I love about the AoG and the AoR is that they’re not countries where I’m particularly familiar with a lot of painters (Germany more than Russia because I’ve been there). I felt like someone was opening up a huge new treasure house for me.

  4. AvatarNoreen

    Loved the photos Catherine. The horses look so real in some and I love that they look in full flight but not so sure of the last one. Ugh!

    1. Cathryn HeinCathryn Hein Post author

      It’s a bit freaky, isn’t it, Noreen? So hard to get your head around. When I first saw it I find it a bit upsetting but once I got used to it I thought it was fun. Sort of… It’s pretty mind-bendy but the the artist is renowned for that kind of work.
      Thanks for checking the piccies out, Noreen, and taking the time to comment.

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