'La Bergère' or 'The Shepherdess' was a small, disused farmworker's cottage that Vanessa Bell discovered in 1927 on a trip to Cassis. She took on a ten-year lease intending to use the house for painting trips to the area. (see F. Spalding, Vanessa Bell, London, 1983, p. 217).
It was situated not far from Villa Corsica, a house that they had previously rented in Cassis, 'Looking down across the fields towards Cassis, was an uninhabited workman's cottage. It was exactly what Duncan had hoped for. I have taken a cottage on his (Teed's) estate to be turned into a studio', he told Eddy [Sackville-West]. 'It is in a most heavenly position. In a "classical" landscape some way from the town or village' (see F. Spalding, Duncan Grant A biography, London, 1997, p. 279).
We are very grateful to Richard Shone for his assistance in preparing the catalogue entries for lots 156-161.