Skip to main content
A White Horse, and an Old Man binding Faggots
Philips Wouwerman
/

Winter threatens in Wouwerman’s little picture. Clouds tower up. An old man crouches in the undergrowth, gathering faggots (twigs bound up to make a fire). Behind him, a woman sits with her back to him, facing the weather and nursing a baby bundled up against the cold. A gnarled tree sheds its few leaves – its branches quiver in the rising wind – and a dog sniffs after rabbits.

The white horse on the skyline dominates, its mottled coat gleaming in the dying light. Its mane is windswept and its pose awkward – Wouwerman has painted it urinating. Its tack is simply rope instead of leather and the wooden saddle looks heavy, held on with thin rope. The picture shows the endurance of animals and people alike against the bleak Dutch landscape, and was probably designed to hang in the warmth of a town house, perhaps as a comfort or perhaps as a moral message.

Key facts
Artist Philips Wouwerman
Artist dates 1619 - 1668
Full title A White Horse, and an Old Man binding Faggots
Date made 1650s
Medium and support Oil on oak
Dimensions 31.8 x 26.3 cm
Inscription summary Signed
Acquisition credit Bought, 1871
Inventory number NG881
Location in Gallery Not on display
Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download an 800px wide, 72dpi copy of this image.

License this image

License and download a high resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Yes, I'd like to donate
Or
Download low resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo