A red deer stag stands with its powerful neck raised, antlers filling the sky. In the background mists swirl over the Scottish Highlands. The Monarch of the Glen was painted in 1851 by Sir Edwin Landseer, a star in his own time. Animals were his speciality, both in painting and sculpture – the lions at the base of Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar square are his. Emotive portraits of animals went down very well with the Victorian public, crossing the class divide. Queen Victoria had Landseer paint her pets, while the middle classes bought prints of his work to hang at home. Continue reading The Monarch of the Glen – the most famous animal portrait ever?