The Edinburgh and London Royal Mail, 1838
Oil on canvas
Signed and dated
20 1/8 x 36 in. (51.1 x 91.4 cm)
This painting combines both of Herring's professions - that of coach driver and sporting artist. As a young man, Herring had driven for a coach company operating from Doncaster, Yorkshire, in the north of England. He also painted the designs on the sides of the coaches. After he became a successful artist, he tended to concentrate on painting horses. But he also worked closely with James Pollard, "the coaching artist," and it is not surprising that their subject matter would cross over, especially considering Herring's earlier employment.
Herring painted this picture at the peak of the mail-coach era, before its rapid decline with the introduction of the railways in the 1840s. It shows a Royal Mail coach making the long journey between Edinburgh and London.
M. Knoedler & Co., New York; Ehrich-Newhouse Inc., New York; private collection, U.S.; Christie's, New York, December 6, 1996, lot 55
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