HENRY KOEHLER (B. 1927)
Henry Koehler is widely regarded as one of the finest living sporting artists. Born in Louisville, Kentucky, his long association with the sporting life began soon after his graduation from Yale when his illustrations began to appear in The New Yorker, Town & Country and Sports Illustrated. His first exhibition was in 1961 and since that time he has shown over 60 times in London, Paris, Dublin, Johannesburg and through the United States. His works can be seen at the National Racing Museum in Saratoga and at the National Horse Racing Museum in Newmarket. He has painted several portraits of well-known thoroughbreds on commission but prefers to capture 'the flavor, sound and smell of racing'. He is unique amongst contemporary artists in being able to capture with such intimacy the world of the horse, not only on the hunting field and racecourse, but also in the boot room, polo lines, and in his sensitive studies of jockeys before and after racing. He now lives and works in Southampton, New York.
His most recent exhibition, Henry Koehler: Elegant Impressions of Turf and Field, was at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, Saratoga Springs, July-October 2003. In the catalogue for this exhibition, Lorian Peralta-Ramos concisely described the strength and appeal of his work, 'Combining a love for and practical knowledge of the equestrian milieu with his instinct and talent for design, Koehler has added a new dimension to sporting art by focusing on the enduring style and glamour of that sporting scene. One's first impression of Henry Koehler's work is that it is the epitome of elegance, an opinion held by those with or without involvement in the equine world.' (pp. 7-8).