Maugham shows Impressionist flair. English painter Daphne Maugham (1897–1982) trained and worked alongside painter, sculptor, and printmaker Felice Casorati, her rigorous but brilliant husband and teacher. Before moving to Italy in 1925, she had studied at the Academie Ranson where she’d trained with Nabis founders Paul Serusier and Maurice Denis. During her Paris years (1918–1921), the artist also studied with Cubist master Andre Lhote. Maugham enjoyed success in Italy and was featured in nine exhibitions at the Venice Biennale between 1928 and 1950, as well as six exhibitions at the Quadriennale Nazionaled’Arte in Rome between 1935 and 1965. She received numerous prizes throughout her career, including the Fiorino Prize at the Florence’s Accademia Gallery. Creative talent ran in her family: her maternal great-grandfather was animal painter Sir William Beechey and her mother, Mabel Hardy, has several pieces in the Victoria and Albert Collection in London. Maugham was a niece of the famed author W. Somerset Maugham.
Daphne Maugham responded to Ragghianti’s appeal with In the Garden (1934), currently in storage as part of Florence’s civic collections. Following restoration in 2016, it was included as part of the ‘Beyond Borders’ show at Florence’s Twentieth-century Museum. The plein-air painting In the Garden is an almost Impressionist example of what Maugham’s husband most admired in the artist: her ability ”to paint with simple joy”.