Hetty Riviere, the young woman in the portrait was the artist’s daughter-in-law. After it was painted the picture stayed in the Riviere family and Hetty donated it to the Victoria Art Gallery in 1971, when she was an elderly woman.
Briton Riviere particularly enjoyed painting dogs. They traditionally featured in paintings as symbols of loyalty and dependability. This appealed to the sentimental tastes of the Victorian and Edwardian era, when it became common for sitters in informal portraits to be accompanied by a faithful dog.
Where to see this painting?
Victoria Art Gallery
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