George Stubbs paintings are best known for the horses that he captured in Whistlejacket and Mares and Foals in a Landscape, but there was much more to his career than just this. Stubbs rose to fame in 18th century Britain with a passion for art and a successful career that followed. Much of Stubbs' paintings and drawings are now stored and on display at the Royal Academy in London, but it took time for the Liverpool-born artist to gain fame in his own lifetime.
After a short period under the tutorship of a Lancashire painter, Stubbs left to forge his own path in the art world, allowing his to use the creativity that he felt he possessed. Stubbs' love of anatomy was crucial in how he could capture animals so accurately and he even went as far as dissecting horses himself at one point.
Stubbs' best work is Whistlejacket, a painting of a prancing horse. It was commissioned by the 2nd Marquess of Rockingham, and is itself now stored now in the National Gallery in London. It is certainly his best known work today, and it's fame often helps to make the rest of his work more accessible to art followers.
George Stubbs remains well known in British art predominantly for his contribution with Whistlejacket, but his extensive career is worth studying in full due to it's interest in accuracy of anatomy and Stubbs' desire to be innovative at a time when it was not encouraged.
Stubbs also went beyond just horses, capturing more exotic animals including lions, tigers, giraffes, monkeys, and rhinoceroses in his paintings, which was very unusual at the time. Stubbs also created some fine engravings during his career which sit well alongside his achievements with oil. Stubbs is also known to have visited Italy at various times in his life, but it is unclear as to how much this affected his beliefs and techniques within his art.