Horse and Rider - 1974: Elisabeth Frink

Elisabeth Frink Art in Mayfair
Horse and Rider, 1974: Elisabeth Frink

As Edward Lucie-Smith observed in 1994, 'one of Frink's best-known images is Horse and Rider (1974), commissioned by Trafalgar House and situated on the corner of Piccadilly and Dover Street in central London. Thousands of Londoners pass it every day, and it is one of the very few contemporary public sculptures in London that seems to be liked and appreciated by the public". (Elisabeth Frink; Sculpture Since 1984 and Drawings, Art Books International, London, 1994, p.50). In a special event on Tuesday 26 June 2018, New West End Company unveiled the newly restored and relocated Horse and Rider sculpture on the corner of New Bond Street and Burlington Gardens, now marking the Burlington Gardens entrance to the Royal Academy of Arts and a new landmark for Bond Street. Described by Frink as “an ageless symbol of man and horse”, the artist was renowned for animal figures, particularly horses, which dominated her work.

About Dame Elisabeth Frink (b. 1930)

Frink Studies t Guildford School of Art (1947) and Chelsea School of Art (1949-53), exhibiting from ethe early 1950’s. She achieved popularity as a figurative sculptor and member if the post war group known as the ‘Geometry of Fear” school. She was fascinated with naturalistic forms, particularly the sensuality and strength of the make form. She taught sculpture at Chelsea, St Martin’s and the Royal College, an moved to France from 1967 to 1973 to explore abstract art. She became a royal Academician in 1977 and was appointed a BDBE in 1982. Her first major commission was for the Eagle lectern of Coventry Cathedral in 1962, and her last for the Risen Christ for the Anglican Cathedral, Liverpool in 1993.

Text: National Portrait Gallery

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