Historical Portraits Picture Archive

Portrait of Henry James (1843-1916) 

Annie Louise Swynnerton (1844-1933)

Portrait of Henry James (1843-1916), Annie Louise Swynnerton
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Oil on canvas
19th Century
22 5/8 x 20 1/8 in.
 
Henry James was an American-born writer, regarded as one of the key figures of 19th-century literary realism. An extraordinarily productive writer, in addition to his voluminous works of fiction he published articles and books of travel, biography, autobiography, and criticism, and wrote plays, some of which were performed during his lifetime with moderate success.

James spent the last 40 years of his life in England, becoming a British subject in 1915, one year before his death.

Annie Louisa Swynnerton was born in Kersal, then a suburb of Manchester. She began painting to contribute to the family's support. Later she trained at the Manchester School of Art and the Académie Julian in Paris. She married sculptor Joseph Swynnerton in 1883 and lived with him in Rome for much of her maturity.

She was an active feminist and suffragette. With Susan Dacre she founded the Manchester Society of Women Painters in 1876. In 1922 she became the first female associate of the Royal Academy since the 18th century. She died on Hayling Island in 1933.

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