Little Visitors (attributed, 1883 or earlier)

Little Visitors

Known only from a copy in a weekly journal (The Graphic Christmas Edition, 1883) – a lithographic image over-printed with coloured inks. The print is entitled ‘Little Visitors, from the picture by Miss Annie L. Robinson.’

Annie married in 1883, to become Mrs. Swynnerton, so this work, if by her and assuming completed in that year, would be one of her last under the name Robinson.

I personally feel the original painting is likely to have been by Annie, based on (1) the ‘face-on’ pose of the children, (2) the allegorical tone (mourning-style dress and picture title) of the picture, (3) attention to window detail reminiscent of The Letter which was painted about the same time, (4) detailing of the eyes and (5) crudeness of brushwork the further away from the face one gets, especially in the clothing. However, there is no direct evidence that was by her – no signature or monogram reproduced in the print and no known other reference to a work under this name, so it has to remain ‘attributed,’ albeit likely to have been painted by her – one of many lost/unknown portraits, the production of which was Annie’s chief source of income.

Little Visitors - faces

Little Visitors - detail

Photos: Jonathan Russell.

LOCATION: UNTRACED (original painting), PRIVATE COLLECTION (print).