Tag Archives: James Pollard

#FineArtFriday: Kidd’s Omnibus outside the Angel Inn, Brentford, c. 1840, by James Pollard

Title: Kidd’s Omnibus Outside the Angel Inn, Brentford

Artist: James Pollard

Genre: Genre Calendar Illustrations

Medium: Aquatint

Date: circa 1840 [1]

Today’s Fine Art Friday offering is Genre Art, a scene originally published in a calendar. In most working class homes, the only secular art that was hung on the walls were prints, many of which originated in calendars, as most people couldn’t afford to buy original art.

Since the mid-1700s, printed wall calendars have historically been a good source of advertising for small to large businesses. To this day, many supermarkets and hardware companies give illustrated wall calendars away for free to customers as promotional merchandise.

About the Artist, via artnet and Wikipedia:

James Pollard was a British painter best known for his depictions of horse-drawn carriages, fox hunting, and other equestrian scenes. Born in 1792 in Islington, United Kingdom to the painter and publisher Robert Pollard the Elder, he went on to work for his father’s firm as a draftsman and engraver. While working for his father, he was commissioned by a print seller named Edward Orme to paint an inn’s signboard, which would depict a mail-coach with horses and passengers. This commission launched the artist’s career, for the signpost was seen by many prospective patrons. Pollard went on to exhibit his work at the Royal Academy and the British Institution in London. Today, his works are in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Tate Gallery in London, and the Denver Art Museum, among others. Pollard died in 1867 in London, United Kingdom. [2]

Between 1821 and 1839, James Pollard exhibited at the Royal Academy. He exhibited at the British Institution in 1824 and 1844. During his career, he also worked with John Frederick Herring, Sr. on several horse racing paintings in which he painted the backgrounds and spectators while Herring painted the horses. [3]

What I like about this image:

This painting of Kidd’s Omnibus was created for a circa 1840 calendar by James Pollard, who was considered an adequate draftsman and illustrator in his day. It was most likely printed in his father, painter and publisher, Robert Pollard’s, printshop, as he was his father’s primary illustrator. [4]

In this illustration, we see the historical origination of urban public transportation – the Horsebus, or Omnibus. We have shortened the term to just ‘bus’ in the context of public transportation. Most  omnibuses were like cabs, in that they were owned by the drivers. However, since the drivers plied their trade on a regular route, they could carry more people. They could charge a lesser fare that the working class could afford, and still make a living.

According to Wikipedia:

horse-bus or horse-drawn omnibus was a large, enclosed and sprung horse-drawn vehicle used for passenger transport before the introduction of motor vehicles. It was mainly used in the late 19th century in both the United States and Europe and was one of the most common means of transportation in cities. In a typical arrangement, two wooden benches along the sides of the passenger cabin held several sitting passengers facing each other. The driver sat on a separate, front-facing bench, typically in an elevated position outside the passengers’ enclosed cabin. In the main age of horse buses, many of them were double-decker buses. On the upper deck, which was uncovered, the longitudinal benches were arranged back to back. [5]


Credits and Attributions

[1] Kidd’s Omnibus outside the Angel Inn, Brentford, c. 1840, by James Pollard, via Wikimedia Commons contributors, “File:Kidd’s Omnibus outside the Angel Inn, Brentford, c. 1840, by James Pollard.jpg,” Wikimedia Commons, the free media repository, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?title=File:Kidd%27s_Omnibus_outside_the_Angel_Inn,_Brentford,_c._1840,_by_James_Pollard.jpg&oldid=195379488 (accessed July 23, 2020).

James Pollard (Life time: (1792–1867) – Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons. (Original text: Original publication: UK Immediate source: Sammlung Fane de Salis: ephemera, from an old calendar.) This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published (or registered with the U.S. Copyright Office) before January 1, 1925.

[2] James Pollard, Biography, artnet contributor, via artnet: http://www.artnet.com/artists/james-pollard/ accessed 23 July 2020.

[3] James Pollard, Wikipedia contributors, “James Pollard,” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=James_Pollard&oldid=838787787 (accessed July 23, 2020).

[4] Wikipedia contributors, “Robert Pollard (engraver),” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Robert_Pollard_(engraver)&oldid=918903796 (accessed July 23, 2020).

[5] Wikipedia contributors, “Horsebus,” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Horsebus&oldid=956355839 (accessed July 23, 2020).

 

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