About this artwork
Soldiers and horses were among Géricault’s favorite subjects, symbolizing energy, emotion, and individuality. In its laser-like focus on one cavalry soldier and his charging horse in the heat of battle, this drawing’s romantic intensity departs radically from the Classical restraint of many works of the period.
Géricault exoticized his horseman, giving him African features and clothing him in the garb of an Ottoman mamluk, a caste of Muslim slave soldiers who fought for their indepe-dence in Egypt in the early 1800s. The artist was politically progressive for his time and championed the cause of liberty with this image. However, mamluks were most often of Turkic, Coptic, or Circassian descent, and Géricault’s depiction may not have been historically accurate.
- Currently Off View
- Prints and Drawings
- Jean Louis André Théodore Géricault
- Turkish Cavalier in Combat
- Brush and brown wash, heightened with white gouache over black chalk, with blue wash on brown laid paper
- 280 × 220 mm
- The Regenstein Collection