N05440 THE YOUNG ACTRESS 1943
Inscr. ‘MS’ b.r. and, on back, ‘MS 43 C. Gdns.’
Canvas, 29 3/4×25 (75·75×63·5).
Purchased from Arthur Tooth & Sons (Knapping Fund) 1943.
Repr: Hendy, 1944, pl.20; Rothenstein, 1962, n.p.
This is a portrait of the artist's niece Phoebe Noël Smith (Mrs John Stewart), painted just before or soon after her twenty-first birthday in 1943 at the artist's studio in Clarendon Gardens, W.9. The sitter began her dramatic training at the Westminster Theatre School but shortly after the outbreak of war joined the W.R.N.S. She later appeared in A. P. Herbert's play Big Ben. She gave up her acting career, emigrating to Canada in 1952 and becoming Head Librarian of the Children's Library, Montreal (information from A. Noël Smith, 16 July 1958).
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, II