American Racehorse - September/October 2015

Page 52

Courtesy Thomas Allen Pauly

Artist Thomas Allen Pauly captures the glory of American Pharoah By Annie Johnson

When 25-year-old artist Thomas Allen Pauly had his photo taken with a Triple Crown winner back in 1985, he couldn’t have known that America would endure another drought between victors that would last even longer than the 25-year lapse between Citation and Secretariat. Nor could he have foreseen that once the 37-year Triple Crown losing streak was broken by a new champion in 2015, he’d be the one honored with the opportunity to paint the official portrait of America’s new Thoroughbred hero, American Pharoah. 50

Chicago-based Pauly has been successfully capturing the courage and spirit of the sport’s most remarkable equine athletes since 1978. Although his work as a sporting artist originated with photographing and producing portraits of harness racers, within the next decade he was fortunate to meet and photograph the legendary Secretariat. Equine artist and colleague Judith Berkshire Jones, who Pauly says was influential in his beginning years as an artist, took him to Claiborne Farm to see “Big Red” in 1985, four years before the horse’s death due to complications from laminitis.


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