In the Orchard, c. 1910
oil on canvas
91.8 x 106.5 cm
Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Gift of Chief Justice G. Tritschler
Dorothea Sharp was one of England’s best-known Impressionist painters, working among the generation of artists who succeeded the French Impressionists. Borrowing stylistic elements from her French colleagues, Sharp used an unconventional palette and loose brushstrokes to create naturalistic renderings or impressions of the landscape. As is typical of Sharp’s choice in subject matter, In the Orchard celebrates rural labour in the outdoors, showing a woman feeding chickens. Focusing on domestic activities-—in this instance work on a farm—Sharp’s painting echoes the work of Berthe Morisot and Mary Cassatt, two French artists who championed the honest depiction of women and children at work, at play, and at home in urban and rural settings.