About this artwork

Mauve began painting horses as a young boy living in Haarlem. He settled in The Hague in 1871 and often worked in the rural parts of the city near Rijswijk and the area around the Trekvliet and Cromvliet, all possible locations for this work. Like fellow artist Jacob Maris, he painted several variations on the theme of horses trudging along tow-paths. The horses were used to haul barges carrying goods along the river or canal towards the city. Vincent van Gogh, who was Mauve’s cousin by marriage, recognised in Mauve’s paintings of workhorses the animal’s sense of resigned suffering and endurance. Mauve was also known for his rendering of a special kind of silvery light that can be seen reflected in the canal and the puddles on the muddy path.

Updated before 2020

  • artist:
  • title:
    The Tow-path: No. 2
  • date created:
    About 1868 - 1878
  • materials:
    Oil on panel
  • measurements:
    25.00 x 18.00 cm
  • object type:
  • credit line:
    Bequest of Hugh A. Laird 1911
  • accession number:
    NG 1058
  • gallery:
  • subject:
  • photographer:
    Antonia Reeve
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Anton Mauve

Anton Mauve