Daniel Ridgway Knight, an American ex-patriot, first obtained artistic instruction at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, before pursuing his studies in Europe at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris and in Rome at the Accademia di San Luca. Returning to America, he served in the Civil War, before moving back to France permanently in 1872.
Knight created throughout his extensive career, an idealized view of gentle peasant women tending flower gardens or lost in thoughtful contemplation. In Marie, Knight's adherence to traditional academic standards can be seen in the fine details of the sitter and her dress, the flowering shrubs, the subtle details of the vessels at the sitter's feet and in the soft atmospheric treatment of the river landscape beyond.
This work will be included in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné being prepared by Howard L. Rehs.