My grandmother was a keen painter before being the wife of a busy man and a mother took all her time. I inherited this painting, which I always loved most of all her paintings. When I was very young it defined the concept of ‘Cottage Gardening’ for me. I think she must have painted this between 1912 and 1919. It is the house where my grandfather grew up. I have a dream to recreate this exact garden as a tribute in my garden… (besides the fact that I think it a lovely composition!)
I was very excited to discover this faded photograph of the house in the remnants of an album which had belonged to my grandparents; even more excited when photoshopping it to discover that the upper story of this Georgian-style house was of brick. It was not visible from the faded original! The house was towards the western end of Dorp (=Town) Street, the old main wagon road to Cape Town. Stellenbosch is a beautiful and historic town, some 50km from Cape Town, but the house was demolished many years ago; today this area of town has little character.