Art historians are not known for being a violent lot but when they get riled up about something then you can guarantee that insults will fly if not fists. I suppose it’s not really all that surprising when you are dealing with art. It is by its very nature subjective and what you see in a piece is sometimes very different to what I would. It’s very much the same with critics. One person’s Mona Lisa is a another persons bit of mass produced tat that you might find in a Travelodge. One example is the classic piece Horse and Rider. Who actually sculpted it is the source of some debate and grumpiness.
If you were to purchase a Horse Sculpture from the noted artist Gill Parker you would be in know doubt that you had a piece of quality and you’d know for definite who had created it. Go to https://www.gillparker.com/ to have a look at some of the stunning representations she has made after you’ve found out about the persitgise and disputed Horse and Rider.
First of all if you look at it you’d probably be a bit miffed. It features a rather haughty looking lad dressin doublet and hose out for a jolly jaunt on his favourite palomino. He is looking off to the right but what is rather strange is the way the horse seems to be walking only on its front hooves. It is as if the horse decided that it would be a great idea to kick its back legs out. Either that or it’s just landed and the posh lad on top is looking around to see if anyone has noticed he hasn’t fallen off. It has actually been interpreted that this was just a model for a bigger piece (it’s a 10 inches high and nine inches long) that was due to go on a tomb. The idea is that the horse is scared he is descending to the underworld.
As with all bronze statues the molten metal is poured into a mould. The Horse and Rider is made from beeswax as it allows the artist greater ability to shape the design. This has led some to claim that it is the work of Leonardo Di Vinci who was studying sculpture at the time. However, many modern historians, especially Di Vinci experts, have said this is a load of old rubbish and just an attempt to get the price of the piece up at bit. They say that the figure on horseback is so unlike the military figure that Di Vinci would have gone for. The most telling evidence is that Leonardo would never had made something so pedestrian, he’d have done it a lot better.
As a result the piece is now attributed to Leonardo but not actually by him.