Top of drinking fountain for horses
Signed by sculptor W. Couper, and stamped "Henry-Bonnard Bronze Co. 1905"
48" x 60"
Provenance: Purchased from a Westchester County, NY estate
William Couper was an American-born sculptor active in the late 19th and early 20th century. He received his artistic training in Munich and Florence and created a number of sculptures for both public and private entities, including a figure of the Roman goddess Flora which was displayed at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. According to “An American Sculptor on the Grand Tour: the Life and Works of William Couper,” this horse drinking fountain was commissioned for the Willets Farm in 1901 (p.77, fig.81) and originally included a basin and granite stand. The “Willets Farm” mentioned in the book was likely Gedney Farm in White Plains, NY, owned by Mr. Howard Willets. Willets descended from the famed Willets family whose members include Captain Thomas Willets, the first “mayor” of New York. Howard Willets was a successful, albeit eccentric, businessman and built Gedney Farm as a model gentleman’s farm which became known for breeding thoroughbred horses, prized cocker spaniels and dairy cows. Willets was instrumental in founding the Westchester Kennel Club and served as president of the American Kennel Club. Despite his considerable means, Willets’ eccentricities and opulence eventually led him to financial ruin, forcing the farm to close in 1912. It was later converted into a 300 room luxury resort frequented by the rich and famous of the time including Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks. The hotel burned down in 1924, but the associated golf course stayed active and in 1952 the property was reimagined as the Ridgeway Country Club.
Weathered surface as expected with a few cracks.
Condition reports are rendered as specialist opinion by the staff of the Auction House and/or independent consultants and not as statements of fact. We do not guarantee the content of written or verbal condition reports. The absence of a condition report does not imply that there are no condition issues with the lot. Please call us at (609) 397-9374 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions about this lot at least 24 hours prior to auction.
Available payment options on Bidsquare