Our famous racehorses honoured in exhibition


CANNING Downs Station's colourful history will be featured at this month's Warwick Art Gallery exhibition. The 1888 Melbourne Cup, Canning Downs Racehorses: A Tradition of Fine Thoroughbreds and Horses and their Tales are three combined exhibitions that delve into the history of horse racing locally and around Australia. Warwick Art Gallery director Karina Devine said one corner of the gallery had been turned into a theatrette, which will show a continuous reel of racing films. The National Archives footage from the 1923, 1951, 1952 and 1971 Melbourne Cups made up the 17-minute film, with the first feature a silent classic and the latter in Eastman colour, she said. "Canning Downs Racehorses graphically presents the history of the station, known as Queensland's stud-breeding birthplace, from 1840 to the present day," Ms Devine said. "It tells the story of Patrick Leslie and his brothers, and other early owners of Canning Downs, before moving to the family saga that began in 1917." In that year JHS Barnes bought Canning Downs and it has remained in the family to the present day. Canning Downs' most famous exports, Melbourne Cup winner Dalray, Melbourne Cup placegetters Rivoli and Tails, and Caulfield Cup winner Basha Felika, will all be depicted in art works and winning trophies. The 1888 Melbourne Cup will be featured as a special centrepiece, as part of the National Gallery of Australia's travelling exhibition. Warwick artist Lyn Goodwin spent hours researching through old monochrome photographs to produce paintings and drawings that replicate the horses of Canning Downs. Opening the exhibition tonight will be Jim Anderson, who has a long, professional history with horse racing in Queensland. Mr Anderson was a long-time turf editor at The Courier-Mail and still acts as a public relations practitioner for the Queensland Turf Club at Eagle Farm in Brisbane. The opening is free to the public and will take place from 7pm, with the exhibition running until October 29.

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