The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Documents associated with: Ouvrages de peinture, sculpture, gravure, lithographie et architecture, refusés par le Jury de 1863, et exposés, par décision de S. M. l'Empereur, au salon annexe, Palais des Champs Elysées, Paris, 1863
Record 8 of 31

System Number: 08034
Date: [22 April 1863][1]
Author: JW
Place: Amsterdam
Recipient: Henri Fantin-Latour[2]
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 1/33/13
Document Type: ALS[3]

Hotel Brack.[4]
Amsterdam! -

Mercredi -

Mon cher Fantin -

Ecris moi deux mots je t'en prie immédiatement et dis moi que tu iras de suite chez Martinet[5] lui porter ce petit mot, l'autorisant d'exposer "La fille Blanche[6]" si on l'a refusé aux Beaux Arts, comme je le suppose - et raconte moi un peu dans ta reponse tout ce qui c'est passé - qui est recu, et qui est refusé - C'est drole que je sois içi n'est ce pas! Mais je te raconterai tout ça la prochaine fois - je suis si pressé maintenant - Seulement reponds moi tout de suite car je veux partir d'içi deux ou trois jours

A toi

Jimmie Whistler

Expliques a Martinet que je suis en voyage et n'ai pas pu lui écrire plus longuement du reste dis lui tout ce qu'il faut

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Hotel Brack


My dear Fantin -

Write me a line or two I beg you immediately and tell me that you will go at once to Martinet's to take this little note, authorising him to exhibit "The White Girl" if it is refused at the Beaux Arts, as I assume - and tell me briefly in your reply everything that is happening - who has been accepted, and who has been rejected - It's strange that I should be here, isn't it! But I will tell you all about it next time - I am so rushed now - just reply straight away because I want to leave here in two or three days


Jimmie Whistler

Explain to Martinet that I am travelling and was not able to write at more length anyway tell him whatever you need to


1.  [22 April 1863]
JW was in Amsterdam in April and May 1863. 'Wednesday' is likely to be 22 April, preceding Fantin's letters of 26 April and 1 May (#01080 and #01079). The tone of the letter suggests that he has just arrived.

2.  Henri Fantin-Latour
Ignace-Henri-Jean-Théodore Fantin-Latour (1836-1904), artist [more].

3.  ALS
'10' is written in another hand at the top of p. 1.

4.  Hotel Brack.
Brack's Doelen Hotel, on the Doelenstraat. JW was visiting Amsterdam with Alphonse Legros (1837-1911), painter, etcher and art teacher [more]; see Heijbroek, J. F. and Margaret F. MacDonald, Whistler and Holland, Zwolle and Amsterdam, 1997, p. 49.

5.  Martinet
Louis Martinet (1814-1895), history painter, Directeur des Beaux-Arts [more]. JW's letter to Martinet, #08033, was evidently neither delivered nor, as JW requested Fantin some days later, destroyed (see #08035).

6.  La fille Blanche
Symphony in White, No. I: The White Girl (YMSM 38). When it was rejected at the Salon, JW appears to have wanted it to be submitted to the Société Nationale des Beaux Arts; if rejected there, as the letter to Martinet anticipates, then it was to be shown at Martinet's gallery. He then, however, cancelled this authorisation in favour of the Salon des Refusés, which opened at the Palais des Champs Elysées on 15 May, where it was shown as 'La Dame Blanche' (cat. no. 596). It was shown subsequently at Martinet's gallery in July; see Fantin to JW, 19 July 1863, #01082.