Sunday, 8 January 2023

When is a Gilder painted figure, exactly that?

 Its been a while, well a year actually, but then updating my Gilder site was always intended as whenever I had something to say regarding the great man.

 These French Empress dragoons were advertised for sale on E Bay a couple of weeks ago as being from Peter Gilder's early French army. I was tempted even though I have no Napoleonic armies anymore. Luckily I didn't bid on them and the went for over £100. The figures are Hinton Hunt's and I know that Gilder when he was creating his early Napoleonic armies used a lot of Hunt figures, so perhaps they were painted and owned by the great man. I would like to think so

The issue is unless there is absolute proof of provenance it is difficult to attribute any of the Gilder collection to the actual great man simply because he used so many up and coming figure painters. Having talked to several from the Gilder stable its obvious that he was able to sweet talk many talented chaps to 'do' a unit or three for him in exchange for new castings. And why wouldn't one do so.

I know Gilder in his haste to get its on the table would avoid painting his horses stomachs if he could get away with it. While plodders like me were meticulously painting and painting again every part of our figures, Gilder had the foresight and confidence to paint only where you can see. Be warned though, Gilder would also completely paint some of his cavalry regiments as the whim took him.

When Im looking for his work, I usually start by checking for replaced sabers and bayonets, then I check how the horses have been painted, are they wiped off oils etc. Hardly a definitive set of checks given how many painters who worked for him would assiduously copy his brilliant style. i wish I could a definitive answer to how to spot Gilder's work, but it is very, very difficult if not impossible.

 I know that Ian Hinds of Hind's secondhand figures is currently selling very early figures painted by Gilder, knowing Ian Im certain he will have some sort of provable providence. Anyway, great to add a liitle more to the blog. 


1 comment:

  1. Great blog entry Robbie and a very informative one as well. I very much love the history of the hobby as you are probably aware and these blog entries of yours are always brilliant and appreciated. To hear so many great stories of the man is great and I’ve heard from so many of the painters that Peter Gilder used and the stories of turning up with a tray of figures joining the masses already on the shelves .