The four girls seen here are the children of Angelica and David Garnett. Henrietta (b. 1945) is on the far left, next to her sister Amaryllis (b. 1943); on the right are the twins Frances and Nerissa (b. 1947). In their holidays at Charleston they frequently posed for their grandparents, Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant. They invariably came to Charleston two at a time and Vanessa Bell would have made studies of them to include all four in this composition. The setting seems Charlestonian (particularly the flint wall with brick pillar) but it cannot be absolutely verified as such.
Bell painted scenes of family life throughout her career, from the 1911 Nursery Tea through to works in the 1950s that include her daughter Angelica and her children and her son Quentin Bell, his wife Olivier and their family. Amaryllis, who died in 1973, was an actress; Nerissa (died 2004) was a painter; Frances is a musician; and Henrietta has recently published Wives and Stunners: The Pre-Raphaelites and Their Muses.
We are very grateful to Richard Shone for his assistance cataloguing the present lot.