All The Queen’s horses: art show celebrates Her Majesty’s passion

  • An exhibition of art celebrating the role of horses in The Queen’s life is opening this summer to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee.

    The collection of paintings by British artist Jeremy Houghton will be on display at the Osborne Studio Gallery in London from 6-11 June.

    The show, titled All The Queen’s horses, covers Her Majesty’s passion throughout her life, from her first pony Peggy to her racehorses, with more than 60 paintings. There will be three private views, in support of Retraining of Racehorses (RoR), World Horse Welfare and the British Racing School. A percentage of sales at each will be donated to the charity, “to aid in the shared goal of improving access to equestrian sports and improving horse welfare not only on a national, but international scale”.

    Mr Houghton, who was commissioned to paint a portrait of The Queen in 2009 and has been artist in residence to Her Majesty at Windsor Castle and Prince Charles at Highgrove, said: “Horses have played such a significant role in Her Majesty’s life since childhood, and the image of Her Majesty riding is one that is so iconic.

    “It was important that in this exhibition, I not only put a spotlight on the kinds of horses we have become so accustomed to seeing alongside The Queen, for instance military horses or those pulling royal carriages during important royal events, but the horses behind the scenes that have given Her Majesty the ability to take a moment of peace from the pressures of public life as we celebrate her remarkable 70 years on the throne.

    “I am also delighted that the exhibition will support a number of equestrian organisations, all of which work so hard to improve the lives of horses from a range of disciplines, all over the world.”

    RoR chief executive Di Arbuthnot said the charity was “delighted” to be involved, and that funds raised will “contribute to our work of highlighting the thoroughbred’s versatility and increasing the demand for former racehorses in a variety of second careers”.

    World Horse Welfare chief executive Roly Owers said the charity was “hugely grateful” for the opportunity to be involved in this “wonderful celebration”.

    British Racing School chair of trustees Julia Budd added: “We are very grateful.

    “The British Racing School is a charitable organisation which inspires and supports young people, from all backgrounds, to achieve their dreams and potential in the racing industry.

    “Through our Newmarket Pony Academy, we also connect children to horses who would otherwise not have the opportunity. We want all young people with a passion for working with horses to have this opportunity, and we are thrilled to have this platform to share their stories.”

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