© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Ludlow Library & Museum Resource Centre
I am a volunteer gallery guide at Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery. I am researching this painting, specifically the location shown in the painting. I have seen a similar view by this artist, called ‘Ullswater’.
The Collection commented: ‘We have very little information about this painting. It was transferred to us from Whitchurch Museum as 'Rural Landscape with Mountains' by Maude Hall Neale. No further is known about the location, although I agree Gary, it looks very much like the Lake District and we know that she painted views of the area’.
Although, sadly, it is many years since I stayed in Coniston, the distinctive profile of the slope of the left reminds me of the Coniston Fells. Could the viewpoint be Walna Scar Road, a steep lane leading west up from the village, looking north-east over it along the Yewland Beck valley? The first Google street view free of foreground trees is likely from too high up, but zoom in and the profile above the end of the wall (between the trees along the left of the road and the isolated tree(s) to the left) is what I have in mind: https://firstname.lastname@example.org,-3.0842774,3a,15y,40.14h,89.67t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1spnDMU4qyfZjFjFvKdTuVaQ!2e0!7i13312!8i6656
Possibly Ullswater from Pooley end.
Interestingly this artist exhibited portraits only at the Royal Academy. It seems that she showed her landscapes mainly with the Society of Women Artists, showing there from 1909 until 1954. From a review of her exhibits I noted the following titles: Ben Venue (Stirling) (2); The Trossachs; Loch Ard; Aberfoyle; ; Loch Achray; Ullswater (3); Derwentwater. So, if this is representative of her work, she favoured Scottish subjects a little more than views in the Lake District. Those two locations were clearly of the greatest interest to her as far as her landscape painting was concerned.
Just to note that the 1939 register has Maud's date of birth as 24 October 1870 (not the 1869 marked on the Art UK record), and a Portrait Painter. Whilst her London address is shown on the Royal Academy records, she is shown regular in the 1920s and 1930s on the electoral register in Castle Street, Liverpool. Appears to have regularly exhibited in Liverpool too.
The birth year of 1869 is correct. Her maiden name was Rutherford. Here is the entry in the records for Q4 1869. I have also attached the 1871 Census record that shows her age as one year. I checked the records for two of her many siblings and their births (in Waterloo) were also recorded as “W. Derby” in the birth register.
Possibly Hardknot Pass.????? Look at second photo in Link.
Thank you Louis. I think the Lake District is more likely than Scotland. It is hard to be certain without local knowledge.
Andrew Locking has an image on his website that seems similar to the location depicted in this work by Maud Hall Neale.
Please go to the fifth photo below the text at this link.
He has captioned the photo "St John’s in the Vale, with High Rigg to the right and Clough Head to the left”.
That looks like the Coniston road from Broughton with the Fairfield Horseshoe in the distance
The curator at Shropshire Museums and Archives has checked the back of the painting. It is labelled 'Mountainous Landscape', which she describes as a modern label, rather than one attached by the artist. There are no clues as to where it might be, whether the Lake District or a more local scene.
This query has been nagging away for two years, so in the absence of any other candidates gaining support - and in the hope that it might inspire others to check it out - I suggest a view of the Newlands Valley on the road from Buttermere. I can't find a match on Streetview, but offer up this link to the Valley on Google Maps: https://www.google.com/maps/place/Newlands+Valleyemail@example.com,-3.1794029,7647m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m6!3m5!1s0x487cdb2ae602e853:0x64ce7c6a8b2a0991!8m2!3d54.5685531!4d-3.1876264!16s/g/11kry8svfn?entry=ttu
I have looked at the alternative suggestions. The road through St John in the Vale and the Broughton to Coniston roads seem to lack the steep descent shown in the painting. The Hardknott Pass suggestion seems more likely, but the area with trees is close to the bottom of the descent, so I'm not sure you have the elevated view over the valley. But artistic licence...
With better evidence to offer, I also suggest that the year of the artist's death is incorrect. The National Probate Calendar for 1956 gives Maud's death as 16 March in that year.
Sue is correct about the year Neale died being 1956. See below: