|ROUNDING THE LEEWARD MARK (1995), BY WILLARD BOND|
ACQUIRED FROM ANNAPOLIS MARINE ART GALLERY, ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND, DECEMBER 1998
WATERCOLOR ON PAPER, 46 1/4" BY 35 1/4"
This is an original work by acclaimed nautical artist Willard Bond. Mr. Bond specializes in works that involve yachting, especially America's Cup racing. I had several of his posters in my collection for years (in fact, they were the first works of art I personally collected), but I when I visited Annapolis just after Christmas 1998, I decided that it was finally time for me to own an original Bond. Of the several original Bond works on hand at the Annapolis Marine Art Gallery at the time, this is the one that most appealed to me.
This work depicts four yachtsmen on a racing yacht. Although you can't really see much of the yacht itself, there is still a high degree of action in this painting, since the four sailors really appear to be working hard to win the race. The silver mechanisms that they are cranking to reel in the sails are called winches.
"Rounding the leeward mark" means that the yacht is going around the leeward (downwind) mark, which is often the final turn on the course. This is usually one of the busiest times aboard a racing yacht, since everyone is adjusting the sails, bringing the yacht about, etc., as the yacht approaches what is probably the last leg of the race.
Bond's work usually shows yachts at a distance, with no visible crew... so this work is somewhat special. I really like the energy of this work... it's realistic, but at the same time the crew appear somewhat stylized and abstract.
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