Lucy Elizabeth Kemp-Welch RI RBA (1869-1958)

'I studied the form and drawing of horses as though life depended upon it, and though I studied the anatomy of horses at an infirmary, I did not know how to paint until, in 1892, I came to Bushey and Professor Herkomer became my master' - Lucy Kemp-Welch

Study for Colt Hunting in the New Forest

Lucy Kemp-Welch is known above all as a painter of horses. She was born in Bournemouth, showing an early excellence in art - exhibiting for the first time when aged 14 - and at the age of 19, moved to Bushey to study at Hubert von Herkomerís art school.

Kemp-Welch believed in painting out of doors, and made numerous 'snapshots in oil', which were quick oil sketches. As one of Herkomer's best and most favoured students, she was able to set up her own studio, in an old former inn known as 'Kingsley'. She took over the direction of the School after Herkomer, from 1905-1926. As well as pictures of horses, including battle scenes, she painted other animals, flowers, and landscapes. Colt-Hunting in the New Forest (1897), of which a study of one of the colts is shown above, became her best-known picture after being purchased for the Chantrey Collection for 500 guineas. It is in the Tate Gallery. A good, large Timber Hauling in the New Forest is at Bristol.

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