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The Riding House

December 2018 by Dr Georgina Downey
An art historian who's published extensively on the domestic interior, Dr Georgina Downey is the human of Classic, the dressage schoolmaster and Angas, the Cairn terrier. In this regular Horses and People in Art column, she provides a unique equine-centred perspective to famous equestrian artworks.

This month we explore the history of the indoor arena or ‘riding house’ to use its original name. Some might consider that indoor arenas are not necessary in Australia because of our climate, but this would be to overlook the Northern hemisphere influences on equestrianism, including equine architecture. It is also true that those of us in the southern regions benefit from having access to an indoor during our long, cold and wet winters, and those further north benefit from the sun shelter they provide.