CHRISTA WALHOF
Horses




Eclipse (18th Ct.)


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oil on canvas, 59 x 79 inch (1,5 x 2,0 meters)

 
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Eclipse (1764-1789, Marske - Spiletta)
He is considered to be the fundamental foundation Stallion of all thoroughbred horses in the world, 90% can be traced back directly to him. He was practically invincible, those interested in races cancelled as soon as they found out that Eclipse was also taking part.
There are only a few historic portraits of the stallion (most by George Stubbs 1724-1806), but there are some descriptions. His Skeleton is in the National Horse Racing Museum in Newmarket, on which this painting is also based.
The appearance of the horse does not differ significantly from today’s thoroughbreds. But the horse’s croup was about an inch higher than the withers, so he had long hind quarters that generated tremendous thrust and stride. In addition, the heart was enlarged within a deep chest, as is the case with all very fast mammals.
Since there are no photographs of Eclipse, the painting is only intended to give an approximate representation of this brilliant horse.
C.W.

 


    paintings in progress


Secretariat
     

           
       oil on canvas, 63 x 79 inch (1,6 x 2,0 meters)

Secretariat (1970 - 1989, Bold Ruler - Somethingroyal)
Some consider him the best racehorse of all time. His course records on various railways have not yet been achieved until today and are in some cases world records. In 1973 he won the Triple Crown. Winning the Triple Crown is so difficult because the horses have to win three difficult races on different racetracks within a short period of time, and against the best horses ever. The last of these three races, the Belmont Stakes, also goes over an extremely long distance, most horses fail in this race, because it has to show that a horse is not only fast, but also persistent: Secretariat won this race with 31 lengths (!!!), most that has ever been measured until today. He was a relatively big horse, highly intelligent, his heart was greatly enlarged: it weighed three times as much as the heart of an average thoroughbred.
C.W.

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Seabiscuit
  
oil on canvas, 63 x 79 inch (1,6 x 2,0 meters), 2021

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  Man o'War  
 
oil on canvas, 63 x 79 inch (1,6 x 2,0 meters)

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Whistlejacket

oil on canvas, 79 x 79 inch (2,0 x 2,0 meters)

Whistlejacket (18th Century)
This is a reversed version of George Stubbs' (1724-1806) painting of the stallion around 1762.
Typical features of baroque horses painting in the 18th Century  have been reduced, corresponding to a realistic horse representation in the 21st Ct.
There is only little information about the horse, on the one hand it is said that he has been a successful racehorse with the habit of an Arabian horse. Otherwise the look on the painting with the massive neck suggests an elegant baroque riding horse. There is also a story according to which this picture should originally get a rider portrait, but the client then resigned, so that Stubbs had only painted the horse, hence the large free space to the top on the original painting which was actually intended for the rider, and what I left out. The painting is not yet finished, corrections of the coat colour, background etc.
C.W.

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