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This painting of a woman reading in a sunlit garden provides an idyllic image of the Bloomsbury Group at leisure. The identity of the woman remains uncertain. The writer Virginia Woolf, Vanessa Bell’s sister, has been suggested. More probably she is Katherine Laird Cox, whose portrait by Duncan Grant is also in The Courtauld Gallery’s collection. Grant wrote many years later: ‘I see no reasons why the figure in [Fry’s] picture should not be of her. - The pose & general proportions are like hers...’ The technique and the lively colours reflect Fry’s study of French Post-Impressionist painting. The work retains its original frame, presumably decorated by the artist.

The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)



Orchard, Woman Seated in a Garden




oil on canvas


H 35.6 x W 30.5 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

gift from Christine Day, 1958

Work type



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The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)

Somerset House, Strand, London, Greater London WC2R 0RN England

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