Magnano, Waterloo Cup Winner 1874
Oil on canvas, signed & dated 1874
Robert Nightingale was born in London in 1815. He was the father of Basil Nightingale (1864-1940) who also became an animal artist. He was orphaned at the age of 8 and was initially apprenticed to a painter and decorator. However, his artistic talent was soon recognised and in 1837, he began studying art at the Royal Academy. He started exhibiting from 1846 at the Royal Academy and the Suffolk Street Galleries.
Nightingale’s love of horses and hunting brought him into contact with wealthy landowners and he began taking commissions for portraits of their favourite horses and dogs and occasionally their prize cattle. His patrons included the Duke and Duchess of Sutherland, the Earl of Rosebery, the Rt. Hon. H. Chaplin and Sir George Chetwynd. He became friends with Sir Edwin Landseer and Thomas Sidney Cooper. He married Elizabeth and together they had 10 children. He spent most of his life living and working in Maldon, Essex. He died at his son’s house in London on 27 September 1895.
Examples of his work are held by Colchester Museum, Kelmarsh Hall and the National Trust.
The painting is housed in a new, English made gilt frame which is in excellent condition.