Captain George K. H. Coussmaker (Joshua Reynolds, 1782)

“What the hell!” Hemingway said suddenly. “I don’t want to be an art critic.  I just want to look at pictures and be happy with them and learn from them.  Now, this for me is a damn good picture.”  He stood back and peered at a Reynolds entitled “Colonel George Coussmaker,” which shows the Colonel leaning against a tree and holding his horse’s bridle.  “Now, this Colonel is a son of a bitch who was willing to pay money to the best portrait painter of his day just to have himself painted,” Hemingway said, and gave a short laugh.  “Look at the man’s arrogance and the strength in the neck of the horse and the way the man’s legs hang.  He’s so arrogant he can afford to lean against a tree.”

remembers Miss Ross.

Coussmaker sat for Reynolds 21 times and his horse 8 times between February 9 and April 16, 1782 – an exceptional number of times.



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