So far the Middle Grade Gallery has only featured paintings from fantasy novels. This week's description, however, is from a family story set in mid-twentieth century New York; it may even refer to an actual work of art (not the one pictured, which is Renoir's Girl with a Hoop, 1885).
[She] was always finding things that belonged to her in a special way, though ownership had nothing to do with it. Now she had found the picture. The catalogue told her that the picture was called The Princess, that it had been painted by someone named Jules Clairon in the year 1881. In the picture a girl about [her] age was sitting on a garden wall and looking out over an enormous city. She had a solemn little face: her long hair hung to the sash of her old-fashioned dress, and her high-heeled boots were buttoned almost to the knee. Among the potted chrysanthemums at her foot sat a black poodle with a red bow on top of his head. On either side the clipped plane trees were almost bare, and in the distance the huge city was spread in a dusky web of blue and gray.
This must be referring to the French artist Georges Jules Victor Clairin (1843-1919), although I can't find a painting of his online that fits this description. I substituted Renoir's roughly contemporaneous Girl with a Hoop: she has the same solemn face, long hair, and old-fashioned dress. Sadly, no poodle.
Please leave a comment if you think you recognize the source of this description (or if you're an expert on Clairin). And check back on Monday for the details!