SOLD
Serpolette II, winner of Prix de Diane 1881

George Arnull

English ( b.1849 - d.1894 )

Serpolette II, winner of Prix de Diane 1881

  • Oil on canvas
  • Signed & dated 1881 lower right

Image size 18.7 inches x 24.6 inches ( 47.5cm x 62.5cm )
Frame size 23.4 inches x 29.5 inches ( 59.5cm x 75cm )

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Sold by Big Sky Fine Art; this original oil painting by George Arnull dated 1881. The painting has been professionally restored approximately 30-40 years ago. The canvas is lined and mounted on replacement stretchers. The painting is presented and supplied in a mid 20th century ornate frame.

We are thankful to the great grand daughter of the artist in providing us the identity of the horse, it’s owner, rider and location. The painting is featured on the descendant family’s website about the artist www.geoarnull.com .
Reference books have the artist operating under the surname Arnold, Arnald and Arnull. This painting is signed Geo Arnold and dated 1881 and is a portrait of a racehorse called Serpolette II, who was the winner of the Prix de Diane in 1881. The horse is shown in the racing colours of its owner, Monsieur Maurice Ephrussi. Ephrussi was a Russian banker who lived in Paris and married into the Rothschild family. The setting of the painting is the Grandes Ecuries, Chantilly, France. The trainer was the American Fred Carter and the jockey is “Carlyle”.

George Arnull was born on 21st March 1849 at Newmarket, Suffolk, England. He was probably part of the great racing family which included the jockeys William and Sam Arnull He was certainly fascinated by horses and horse racing, and his works immortalise many of the great winners of the principal races in the late nineteenth century. In 1870 he met the French Duke D’Aumale, son of King Louis Phillippe, who had been living in banishment in England. The Duke shared his love of horses and thereafter acted as patron to Arnull, who accompanied him on his return to Chantilly Castle in France. Arnull married Elisabeth Hubbard at the British Embassy in Paris in 1871 and they had four children. The family lived in Avenue Montespan, Paris, where he had his artist’s studio. He loved France and later moved to Normandy, where he dies at the age of just 45. He is buried at Chantilly.