The Chow Chow Champion "Red Craze" by Monica Gray (exh 1903-1919)
Oil on panel of the Champion Chow Chow "Red Craze" by Monica Gray (exh 1903-1919). Signed bottom left "Monica Gray", and titled bottom right “Res Craze”. English, circa 1905.
Champion Red Craze (KC 1400G) was born on 8th June 1901, shied by Ch. Shylock and dammed by Duchesse, by the breeder Mr Sawtell.
Provenance / illustrated:
The ‘head study’ painting by Monica Gray is illustrated in on page 126 of Cassell’ famous publication, ‘New Book of the Dog’. In Cassell’s Mrs B F Moore writes that Champion Red Craze “owns the head which is perfect” and that “the illustration by Miss Monica Grey shows the correct ear carriage and broad muzzle, but does not quite reproduce the scowl and characteristic expression of a good Chow”
On the same page Thomas Fall, the dog photographer of the period has photographed a Ch. Red Craze standing.
Mrs Moore recalls that Ch. Red Craze weighed ’38 lbs., when in my hands’.
Ch. Red Craze was also painted by Maud Earl, in a group of Chow Chows owned by the famous Mrs Scaramanga, (of 8 Sussex Square, Hyde Park, London), which is reproduced in Cassell’s ‘New Book of the Dog’.
Ch Red Caze is well documented in many of the authoritive works on the Chow Chow, including ‘The Popular Chow Chow’ by Leighton and Baer’:
“With her possession of Ch. Red Craze, Mrs Scaramanga did much to awaken laggard public interest in this charming breed. She exhibited him at most of the important shows part curly in and around London. He became one of the most familiarly-known of exhibition dogs during the first decade of the century, and it was rarely that he failed to gain the highest honours. At one juncture he was reputed to have gained a greater number of challenge certificates than any dog of any breed. He was by so far the best Chow on the show bench that his invariable successes may have discouraged other exhibitors; and he had a long career.”
Images are available for research and public use with an acknowledgement to www.hamsheregallery.com