The sport of horse racing is quite literally archaic. Archeological data indicates that horse racing dates back to at least the ancient civilizations in Greece and Egypt, and served as a proving ground of crucial equestrian skills.
Today, while the “Sport of Kings” may still be among the favorite pastimes of the well healed, for many it has lost its appeal in a world of NASCAR, motocross, and all things shiny and fast.
Faced with a competitor it clearly cannot out run, The Breeders’ Cup is seeking to innovate in an artistic way. In partnership with Discover Los Angeles, it has launched The Best is Yet to Come Horse Art Exhibition, a pop-up community art program created in collaboration with Crewest Studio.
Five life-size, six-foot tall horse statues painted by notable Los Angeles street artists are on display though out the L.A. community.
The painted ponies by Man One, a graffiti artist and founder of Los Angeles’s Crewest Gallery; Andre Miripolsky, a renowned muralist and transplant to Los Angeles by way of Paris; Yolanda Gonzalez, who studied at the Pasadena Art Center College of Design; Clinton Bopp, a New Zealand-born artist who works primarily in acrylic, spray paint, and oils; and Michael Massenburg, whose previous public art collaborations include projects with ESPN, the American Jazz Museum, and MTA Metro, among others; really are quite beautiful. Take a look for yourself!
If you happen to be in the greater Los Angeles area and have the opportunity to see these works of art on display at Westfield Santa Anita, Westfield Fashion Square, The Outside Atrium of the Bank of America Plaza, Pershing Square, or the Los Angeles Equestrian Center, I highly recommend it. Not only for their majesty. But also because the horse displays are part of a Snapchat promotion, where fans and visitors can snap a photo with one of the horses to discoverLASnaps on Snapchat for a chance to win a pair of tickets to the Breeders’ Cup.
The Best is Yet to Come Horse Art Exhibition will be continue through the end of October, when the horse statutes will be transferred to Santa Anita Park to be displayed at the 33rd running of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships on Nov. 4-5, 2016. The colorful horses will be sold at a charity auction that will take place on Thursday, Nov. 2.
The Crewest Studio members are not the only modern artists taking part in The Breeders’ Cup this year. Daniel Dawson, whose contemporary oil paintings, acrylics, watercolors, and mixed media pieces are influenced by British and American popular culture and where the two converge, has been named the official artist for the 2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
The 2016 official Breeders’ Cup image is the artist’s unique expression of iconic racing scenes and traditional racetrack nomenclature splashed near the top, with bisecting lines dividing space among shots of a woman in a fedora, a swirl of Breeders’ Cup Classic winners’ racing silks and the Breeders’ Cup trophy. A Thoroughbred and jockey race across the far right side of the image through the Breeders’ Cup logo while the Breeders’ Cup tagline, The Best is Yet to Come, is written in Latin near the bottom. The lower part of the image depicts a sepia and yellow sweep of the homestretch at Santa Anita Park.
It’s not your tired horse racing poster to be sure!
The image is available for purchase at: BreedersCupShop.com.
About the Author
Marjorie Wilkinson is the co-founder and co-editor of Counter-Canter Culture—a revolutionary online publication intended to unite the equestrians and equestrian-enthusiasts who aren’t afraid to kick up the dust that has settled on the conventional equine lifestyle. She is also a real-life Hollywood music supervisor and the official curator of Counter-Canter Culture’s musical column, 100% Sound.