Rosa Bonheur (1822–1899) was a ground-breaking French artist known for her realistic paintings of animals. It was uncommon for women to be painters in the nineteenth century, but she bucked this perception to not only become a critically and commercially successful artist but to help other female artists after her. She was known to dress in what was perceived as ‘men’s dress’ and was an out and proud lesbian at a time when it was not considered socially acceptable. In her life, her work was more successful in England than France, but her paintings can now be found in French, British and US collections.