The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Peter Macnab, 1830-1900

Nationality: British
Date of Birth: 1830
Place of Birth:
Date of Death: 1900
Place of Death:


Peter Macnab was a landscape and rustic genre painter.


Macnab was active as an artist between 1864 and 1892. From 1868 to 1892 he exhibited in London at the Royal Academy, Royal Institute of Oil Painters, Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, Fine Art Society and Society of British Artists.

In 1879 Macnab joined the Society of British Artists, a society for which JW acted as President from 1886 to 1888. In 1885 Macnab, along with JW, promised to donate one of his pictures to the society which was holding a ballot to raise funds. The first fifty subscribers of £5.5 were to receive an etching by JW (#09363). In this year he attended JW's Ten O'Clock Lecture which he thought 'sparkled' with 'epigrammatic phrase', and had 'depth as well as gleam' (#03730). He was one of JW's staunch supporters in the RBA and was among those who resigned in support of JW when he was forced to stand down as President in 1888 (#03506). In 1888 he joined a committee that set about organising a meal to be held at the Criterion on 1 May 1889 in celebration of JW's honorary membership of the Royal Academy in Munich (#00331). In 1890 JW presented Macnab with a copy of Whistler, James McNeill, The Gentle Art of Making Enemies, London, 1890. Macnab responded by saying: 'In addition to the Gentle Art of Making Enemies, you must be credited with the yet more Subtle Art of Making Friends -' (#03736].


Bénézit, E., Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs, 8 vols, Paris, 1956-61; Wood, Christopher, Dictionary of Victorian Painters, Woodbridge, 1871; Wood, Christopher, The Dictionary of Victorian Artists 2nd ed., revised, Woodbridge, 1978; Johnson, J., and A. Gruetzner, Dictionary of British Artists 1880-1940, Woodbridge, 1880.