The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Theodore Child, 1846-1892

Nationality: American
Date of Birth: 1846
Place of Birth:
Date of Death: 1892.11.02
Place of Death:


Theodore Child was an American journalist and art critic.


Child, whilst respecting Whistler as an artist, objected to the elitist views on art and art critics expressed in his Ten O'Clock Lecture, and wrote a very critical review in the New York Sun on 5 December 1885. However, there was a reconciliation and in 1886 Child declared his intention of writing a favourable review in the New York Sun, following Whistler's planned lecture tour of the States. However, this proposed tour never took place.

In 1889 he wrote an article for Harper's New Monthly Magazine that discussed Whistler's work. Hoping to have it illustrated, he offered the print dealers H. Graves and Co. £10 in December 1888 to have Arrangement in Brown and Black: Portrait of Miss Rosa Corder (YMSM 203) engraved. Whistler approved of both article and etching. The latter was carried out in Paris by F. Florian.

Child was one of those invited to Whistler's celebratory dinner on 1 May 1889 but was unable to attend. He was in correspondence with Whistler from 1886 until 1889.


Child, Theodore, 'Mr Whistler's Ten O'Clock', New York Sun, 5 December 1885; Child, Theodore, 'American Artists at the Paris Exhibition', Harper's New Monthly Magazine, vol. 79, September 1889, pp. 489-521; Child, Theodore, 'A Pre-Raphaelite Mansion', Harper's New Monthly Magazine, vol. 82, December 1890, pp. 81-99.