Marianne North grew up in a conventional Victorian household, however, unusually for the times she had an abhorrence of marriage. On the death of her parents she found her life without purpose. So at the age of 40 she packed her easel and her brushes, left England behind and embarked for South America.
She spent 8 months in a hut in the Amazon completing an extraordinary number of oil paintings of ‘the peculiar vegetation’.
Marianne eschewed companions preferring to rough it alone, sleeping on the ground and scaling cliff faces to reach her exotic subjects.