Branch with a cluster of ripe plums and caterpillars, Mrs. Smith; watercolor, roughly 10 x 10 inches (25 x 25 cm). Link is to the image page on Wikimedia Commons. Original is in the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum.
The image is credited to “Mrs. Smith”, based on a pencil signature at the lower right of the paper. Neither Wikimedia Commons nor the museum offer any clue as to who “Mrs. Smith” is, and I can find little elsewhere. The painting is dated 1830 and country of origin is listed as the UK. Beyond that, we’re on our own.
We can assume Mrs. Smith was a botanical artist of some skill if not of particular note.
Close up, she has used broad, painterly and seemingly casual marks to define her subject, but when seen from a normal distance, her colors and values are so accurate that the representation of the fruit, leaves, branch and insects is wonderfully naturalistic.