LEFT FILL Horses in Art Magazine

The Art of Polly Barrett

by Mary Shimel

Number 2382 – Watercolor by Polly Barrett.

Merely viewing Polly Barrett’s art is enough to make you a true lover of the west, and especially of the magnificence, majesty and romance of the horse. To understand and see into the passion of Polly’s western-themed artwork is to know where she was born, raised and where she thrived during her childhood. Its natives have often referred to Boise, Idaho, as a suburb of heaven. And so this place was Polly’s playground as a child, but not in the usual aspects of a playground. Polly spent most of her early childhood babysat by a 27-year-old mare named Sherry. As soon as the summer days began, Polly could be seen running across the street, through numerous backyards, and over a couple fences to a neighborhood pasture, where her friend awaited her. Polly first met Sherry when her older sister threw her up on the red mare’s back and gave Sherry a good slap – Polly’s love affair with horses began that day and continued on through her life. Polly later bought Sherry for a dollar, and they remained together, best friends for the remaining years of Sherry’s life.

As Polly grew older, her passion for horses expanded to her love of drawing and painting. Through grade school and high school Polly excelled in art, always with a western theme of course, and almost always including horses. Polly continued her love of painting and achieved a BA in Fine Arts from Boise State University.

Years have gone by, and Polly’s art has gained a certain degree of beauty that can only come from the pure love of a creature that stole her heart when she was a young girl. She enjoys painting her beloved horse in its natural state; the dusty Mustang, the weary work horse, and the foaming, hardworking cattle pony. Polly also has expanded her repertoire to the bedraggled, exhausted wrangler and cow dog, depicting scenes that almost make you wish you were there. And sometimes, as you view Polly’s art…if you explore, watch, feel… you will almost swear you hear the hooves of a thundering herd and the call of the cowboy in the distance.

Three Mustangs – Watercolor by Polly Barrett.

Currently, Polly has her watercolors and oils displayed in several Idaho galleries: The Artisan (Eagle, Idaho), Razzle Dazzle, (McCall, Idaho), The Gallery at Hyde Park, (Boise, Idaho) and The Dream Catcher, (Sun Valley, Idaho). Her paintings are also owned in many high profile collections throughout the United States as well as internationally. She has also been featured in the “Artist to Watch” section of Southwest Art Magazine.

Polly has been in numerous juried art shows and continues to paint daily as well as teach aspiring artists in her spare time. Recently Polly’s art was displayed on a wine label of a local winery. The winery, Three Horse Ranch, began sales of this wine in May 2008.

You can view Polly’s artwork at

~ Back ~