A very rare complete set of 4 Gilbert Holiday 1st WW scenes. The photolithographic images are mounted onto sub sheets and are all signed in pencil by the artist. They are all framed and in good order, published circa 1916/7. Printed onto the mounts ‘Copyright. Published by Geo. Pulman & Sons Ltd., London, W, and the Leicester Galleries, London, W.C.’.
The set is a limited edition of probably 200.
The titles with their edition number are :
Communications Trench -178
Salvo – Ready Fire -176
The Wagon Line – 178
The D.A.C Mule – 76
Charles Gilbert Holiday (1879 – 1937) was the son of Sir Frederick Holiday, his mother was a watercolourist and his uncle, Henry Holiday, a well-known stained glass designer. Known as Gilbert or ‘GH’, his work was of the highest quality and his ability to work with oils, watercolours, crayon, chalk and other mediums showed great versatility. Gilbert was a London born equestrian painter highly thought of by his contemporaries, particularly C.J. Payne (Snaffles) and Lionel Edwards, Edwards said of him “no one can, or ever could, paint a horse in action better than Gilbert could.” It has been said that Holiday ranks alongside Lionel Edwards, Snaffles and Alfred Munnings as one of the greatest equestrian artists of the 20th Century.
Holiday attended the Royal Academy Schools and later went on to work as an illustrator at The Graphic, The Tatler and The Illustrated London News and other illustrated magazines.
When war was declared in 1914, Holiday worked as a war artist for The Graphic and although too old to officially join up, he managed a commission into The Royal Field Artillery, 8th Corps. with whom he served with distinction at Arras, Passchendaele and the Third Battle of Ypres. He continued sketching throughout the War producing many atmospheric and moving drawings. He left the Army in 1919 and his love of horses continued to influence his life, becoming a well-respected equine artist concentrating on sporting subjects: hunting, racing, point-to-points and polo. He excelled more than any other artist in portraying polo successfully and was well adapted at depicting speed. He became world famous for his paintings of The Grand National and other race meetings, as well as the posters for the Royal Tournament.
A fall whilst out hunting with the Woolwich Drag in 1932 shortened his life. He crushed his spinal cord and never walked again, but with considerable courage he continued painting but from a wheelchair. He died on the 8th January 1937 at the age of 57.