1854 - 1925
Oil on canvas, signed and dated `95
The painting depicts Mr McCorquodale, one from the family of the printing company McCorquodale and Co. Ltd that was established in 1840 near Liverpool and specialised in work for the Post Office. His son, Alexander, was the first husband of the novelist Barbara Cartland who later became step-grandmother to Princess Diana.
This picture was a retirement gift to Mr McCorquodale's gamekeeper who can be seen in the background.
George Paice came from a wealthy family and although not a horseman himself, he had a keen and sensitive equine eye and had a personal interest in racing.
He was fairly prolific during his lifetime and made a very good living from private commission work and so consequently did not feel the need to show his work much at public exhibitions. He exhibited seven times at the Royal Academy with titles such as "Haunt of the Moorhen", "Tis weary waiting here", "The Old Breakwater" and "Well-earned repose" and four times at the Royal Society of British Artists including one titled "Meditation". These works differ from the majority of his work known today.
He received a lot of commission work to paint horses and dogs and in this he was very competent in depicting his subject matter. One of his patrons was Lady Margaret Cecil. However as some of his exhibited work reveals, he also undertook other subject matter and this included still life and African animals, even though he never travelled further than Ireland. A portrait of the race horse "Maidstone Masher", showing the horse together with a collie in a landscape, was one of his private commissions and he was also employed to depict the 1924 Derby winner "Sansovino".
Besides his small format horse and dog portraiture for which he is best known today, Paice produced a small number of large, fine point-to-point scenes, one of which was painted for the Officers' Mess of the Royal Scots Greys.
The Great War considerably affected his commission work and he lost all his money in the early 1900s but continued to paint up until his death. He maintained a consistently fine quality although his later work sometimes showed a very free hand, a departure from his more usual tight and finished technique.
He married Eunice Mary Stuart at St George`s, Hanover Square in1879, living first in Pimlico before moving to Croydon. They had eight children, one of whom, Philip Stuart, also became an artist. He was buried in the family plot in Croydon and his racing colours were draped on his coffin at his funeral.
The Dictionary of British Equestrian Artists - Sally Mitchell
Dog Painting 1840-1940 - William Secord
Dog Painting: The European Breeds - William Secord
Dictionary of British Animal Painters - Colonel J C Wood
The Dictionary of British Artists - J Johnson and A Greutzner
The Dictionary of Victorian Painters - Christopher Wood
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