Leader painted very few Devon landscapes, which is surprising because he married Devonshire-born Mary Eastlake in 1876. Although visits to his wife's family were frequent, Leader's reluctance to paint the surrounding countryside can be partly explained by his diary of 20 December 1865. After returning from a visit to North Devon, the artist wrote that he 'did not work, not caring for the scenery'. Perhaps this view of a stream running through a wooded landscape reminded Leader of earlier excursions to paint the river Llugwy between Betws-y-Coed and Capel Curig in North Wales.
A small finished oil sketch on board (18 x 14 in.) for this work exists, which was sold to the London art dealer Vokins in 1883.
We are grateful to Ruth Wood for her help in preparing this catalogue entry.