Photos: J. Russell.
From the catalogue to the Woman’s Exhibition, 1900, Earl’s Court, London, pp16-17:
“The many pictures and sketches by which [Mrs. Swynnerton] is represented are distinguished by a masculine largeness that is rarely to be noted in a woman’s work. She has almost a sculptor’s sense of mass and love of ample form, and she uses colour with a decorator’s idea of balance and distribution. At the same time she paints with feeling and with true poetry, so that everything she produces has an interest to the thinker as well as to the seeker for technical quality. She has sent here things done at various periods of her career, and the growth of her professional understanding can, therefore, be followed with some closeness. Between her rustic study, “Thro’ the Orchard,” and her finely conceived and painted “Panae” there is a marked difference, a change of view and style that argues a vast amount of concentration and devotion to the pursuit of a worthy ideal.”
This painting is usually called ‘The Young Mother’, ‘The Little Mother’ or even ‘Thro’ the Orchard.’ However, both Annie and her husband, Jospeh, refer to it as ‘Through the Orchard’ in their writings.
The current noteice by the picture in Manchester Art Gallery says it was painted in the 1880s. Close examination of the bottom right of the picture shows it to carry a date of 1883.
LOCATION: DUBLIN CITY GALLERY. CURRENTLY ON LOAN TO MANCHESTER ART GALLERY.