The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Marlborough, Duke of
Record 9 of 15

System Number: 05737
Date: 10 May 1892
Author: David Croal Thomson[1]
Place: London
Recipient: JW
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler T82
Document Type: ALS

[royal coat of arms]
116 & 117, NEW BOND STREET, W.


10 May 1892.

Dear Sir,

We hope to have the new proofs of the photographs tomorrow or next day & will send them at once. We are doing the Music Room[2] smaller also & hope to arrange for the Portfolio all right.

Champ[s] de Mars[3]. The success there is being noticed here. Daily Chronicle[4] to-day & I hope also the Globe tomorrow if now [sic] crowded out - I sent the news in various directions & the effect is visible.

Marlborough[5]. I saw him at Carlton House Terrace [p. 2] again yesterday & discussed the situation. He says he leaves London at the end of the month. The Dukes adviser (Mr Davis[6]) was with him & to Mr Davis I had already said that £2,500 was the lowest price for the two - Would it do for you to write to the Duke & als ask what he really means & ask him to come to a decision. A written letter in such a case is worth having as he is not an easy man to deal with.

News. The B. P.[7] is sat[u]rated with "Art" of its kind at Burlington House. Academy headaches are worse than usual & people coming out look very different from those going in - think of the mirrors one long shaped the other broad shaped at [p. 3] certain East End restaurants & you can realize it:- Going in [drawing of a happy face] coming out [drawing of a sad face]

Without doubt this is the worst R. A.[8] we ever had!! I spent only one hour truly, but I have been ill ever since. It is dreadful & without hope & I despair of leavening the exhibitors. The Whistler show[9] was too late in the year to have show the effect it had in artistic "success" & this R A. seems the darkest hour before the dawn. Next year we may hope for a little better just here & there, but it is depressing enough at the present -

[p. 4] Enclosed is the estimate from the Photographers at the "very lowest trade" prices & you will see how it runs into money. Unless we could sell enough to give us £600 clear it could not be done. We estimate 10/- to you on each sold which means £100 for the 200. We should require to make it a £5- 5/- portfolio & that price cuts off all hope of artists, students & young people buying it & we rather wanted to appeal to them - Enclosed are 2 pieces of card for the mounting of the photos. No. 1. is the thickness No. 2 the colour. Qu'en pensez vous?[10] Could we have 2 Folios at £3- 3/- each - or would it do to have only 20 in all & select the best.

I am unable to leave London at present having a good deal of family illness, but hope to be in Paris before end of month

Yours vy truly

[stamped:] BOUSSOD VALADON & CO.

D. C. Thomson


J McN. Whistler Eq

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1.  David Croal Thomson
David Croal Thomson (1855-1930), art dealer [more].

2.  Music Room
Harmony in Green and Rose: The Music Room (YMSM 34).

3.  Champ[s] de Mars
2nd Exhibition, Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts, Paris, 1892.

4.  Daily Chronicle
A London newspaper, reference not located.

5.  Marlborough
George Charles Spencer-Churchill (1844-1892), 8th Duke of Marlborough [more], who was considering a portrait commission (see r. and v.: Study for a proposed portrait of the Duke Marlborough (M.1337)).

6.  Mr Davis
Davis, adviser to the 8th Duke of Marlborough.

7.  B. P.
British public.

8.  R. A.
Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.

9.  Whistler show
Nocturnes, Marines and Chevalet Pieces, Boussod, Valadon & Cie, Goupil Gallery, London, 1892.

10.  Qu'en pensez vous?
Fr., What do you think?