Shakespeare’s Juliet asks “What’s in a name?” Perhaps she can be forgiven for not thinking of the name Munnings as she muses about ‘what if’ whilst day dreaming on the balcony.
Born and raised in Ontario, Canada, Beth a relative of the iconic sporting artist, Sir Alfred Munnings. Beth tells us that “Although I’m but a distant cousin, I’ve always felt a special kinship with him, arising from our common love of art, of horses and dogs, poetry, literature and music, and of the English countryside.
There is little doubt that his work is the foundation stone of my inspiration. Prints of his paintings hung in my childhood home, so that some of my first visual impressions were his evocative pictures of gleaming bays in autumn hunting landscapes, gypsy ponies through smoke-laden air, and the glowing coat of a white pony in a sun-drenched sand-pit.
My father was a horseman, and I enjoyed an early introduction to equine culture. My parents were also amateur aritsts, so I was steeped in both horses and art, and had a crayon or pencil in my hand when I wasn’t holding reins, making pictures of the things I loved from a very early age.
Although I took a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature at the University of Toronto, I also enjoyed courses in art history; however, It wasn’t until I was pursuing a postgraduate degree at the University of St Andrews that I had my first exposure to hunting, with the venerable Fife Foxhounds.
The myriad of horses and hounds, the style and timeless elegance of hunting attire, the inspiring settings under often atmospheric conditions, the artistic and cultural traditions, and the raw energy of the chase were revelatory. There is no sport–equestrian or otherwise–which lends itself so beautifully to the artistic eye. I was immediately captivated, and continue to enjoy hunting with friends in both Ontario and Florida, relishing the invigorating sport, camaraderie, association with both horse and hound, and the visual feast the hunt affords.
Additionally inspired by the art of Harry B Neilson, I recently began creating a range of anthropomorphic foxes, both of my own invention and as commissions from clients who share my pleasure in comedic irony.
My art hangs in private collections in the USA, Bermuda , Ireland, the UK, Canada, New Zealand, and the Cayman Islands. I paint commissions and original compositions, working in close consultation with both new and return clientele.
Having immigrated from Canada, I now live with my family at our farm in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the upstate of South Carolina, with two dogs, three cats, two horses, a naughty pony, two miniature donkeys, numerous chickens and innumerable honey bees.
I paint because it’s my passion, and it’s my hope that the pictures bring as much joy to those who see them as I experience in their creation.”
Beth’s current work is best viewed on Facebook at: Munnings Art, on Instagram at: munnings_art, or her website, which is: www.munningsart.com