Albany Museum of Art

Albany, Georgia



The Thrill of Excellence and Eleanor Iselin Wade: Artist and Horsewoman


The Albany Museum of Art is pleased to present two new exhibitions: The Thrill of Excellence and Eleanor Iselin Wade: Artist and Horsewoman. As one of America's oldest sports, thoroughbred racing has a long and rich history. To tell the story of the sport, the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame relies on renowned equine art and trophy collections. The Albany Museum of Art has borrowed 32 paintings, 3 bronze sculptures, and 3 steeplechase trophies for The Thrill of Excellence exhibition, which will be on display in the Haley Gallery from September 21 through November 19, 2000. Also on display in the Raymond F. Evans Sporting Art Gallery will be sixteen bronze sculptures by Eleanor Iselin Wade.

The wonder and mystery of the racing horse have captivated men and women for thousands of years. The "Sport of Kings" has gathered followers around the world, and has created a culture that crosses gender, race, and class lines. It was the love of the sport of racing that originally led to the development of the Thoroughbred, a horse designed specifically for the racetrack and its glory. And today, the sport that created this magnificent animal exists to ensure that the breed continues. The Thrill of Excellence is an exhibit of paintings, bronze sculptures, and steeplechase trophies that celebrates the glory of thoroughbred racing. The artists represented include Sir J. Alfred Munnings, Henry Stull, Edward Troye, and Franklin B. Voss. (left: Edward Troye, American Eclipse, oil on canvas, 1962.3.8)

Eleanor Iselin Wade: Artist and Horsewoman is a retrospective of the 75-year career of an equine sculptor and includes portraits of Ruffian, Kellsboro' Jack, and Lonesome Glory. In 1913, at the age of three, Eleanor Iselin Wade began riding horses and at age five she began drawing horses. Thus began a lifelong passion and career. "So much time has gone by, but it doesn't seem long to me because I've been so busy and active. I think that's what keeps you going and makes life so interesting." Wade studied for two years at the Royal Academy in London and in Munich under the sculptor Hans Strangler.

Returning home from Germany, Eleanor began to do commission work in sculpture and did some illustrating as well, including the second edition of My Friend Flicka. By 1932, she had an established reputation. Today Eleanor Iselin Wade's bronze sculptures are in numerous private and museum collections

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This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 3/23/11

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