Stephen Jack Fine Art

Jay Kirkman

Artist: Jay Kirkman; Painting: Ra Nova at the start of the Schweppes Gold Trophy Race
Jay Kirkman

Ra Nova at the start of the Schweppes Gold Trophy Race

63 x 104 cm


Artist: Jay Kirkman; Painting: Golden Stripe Jay Kirkman

Golden Stripe

20¼ x 32¼ inches



Born in Los Angeles, California in 1958, Jay Kirkman moved to England with his family in 1973. He studied at the West Surrey College of Art and at the Camberwell School of Art from 1976-1980.

He began to focus on equestrian art in the 1980s and has exhibited his work regularly in London since 1983. Kirkman's work has been met with considerable acclaim, and his paintings have been described by one critic as “a marriage between Stubbs and Munnings”.

Artist: Jay Kirkman; Painting: The winner's enclosure Jay Kirkman

The winner's enclosure

10½ x 7¼ inches

Artist: Jay Kirkman; Painting: Evening Meeting Jay Kirkman

Evening Meeting

A pair - pastels
9½ x 3¾ & 9½ x 3¼ inches



Equestrian subjects offer the artist a dynamic source of inspiration that allows a wide variety of approach and experimentation. His pictures range from racing scenes in the long tradition of British Sporting Art to paintings that focus upon the horse in the manner of a psychological study. Kirkman often explores the close relationship between horse and jockey, and he is able to capture the tension and implicit drama of racing most effectively.

Jay's use of oil paint and pastels translates the shimmering silks of the jockeys directly onto canvas. The vivid colours provide a dramatic contrast to the tones of the horses and enliven the rich earth-colours of the English landscape. Through a close study of light and shadow and an incredible attention to detail, Kirkman is able to communicate the often mixed emotions of the racing life and his empathy with the subject to the viewer.

The artist's work is represented in many private collections in Britain and abroad including those of Lady de Chair, Lord Zetland and the late Lord Matthews.


Artist Jay Kirkman: Out of the Blue
Jay Kirkman
Out of the Blue
Pastel on board
44 x 32 inches


Jay Kirkman has been widely praised for his ability to produce equestrian subjects that provide an insight into the mood and character of the animal. 

The horse is depicted standing in a grand stable, having recently been exercised. The saddle has been removed and only the bridle remains; the type of bridle that suits a headstrong horse and which sits awry on the nose following his exertions.

The wall is cracked with age and demonstrates the artist's skill in creating the subtle play of light and shadow over the surface. The room is lit but mysteriously quiet. The reins hang loose, not held by any groom and the horse is still alert and wound up; there is a sense of anticipation that the unseen rider might at any moment return.

The Blue Room contains a chalk white-frieze, which at first sight resembles a Wedgwood pattern, but is in fact derived from the Eadweard Muybridge series of action photographs. The movements also mirror the recent activities of the horse, who now brings a sense of new energy into the elegant but faded grandeur of his surroundings.

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