This painting shows a view of Tissot's garden at 17 Grove End Road in St John's Wood, London, where he had an impressive villa set in a generous plot.

The section of the garden shown here would have been typical of the middle-class suburban villas of the time. It shows a gravel path bordered by lawn, with a long border of mature shrubs and trees to the left with a low edging plant. The path runs behind the house with its greenhouse, the painting thus providing an evocative view of a London garden and its relationship to the house. Privacy was of great importance in the garden design of Victorian villa gardens. The view is a departure for Tissot because it is uninhabited by figures and appears far more blank, melancholic and without the glamour of his usual garden depictions.


Sotheby's 2000; Agnews.

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