System Number: 00830
Date: [10/22 November 1873]
Author: Charles William Deschamps
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler D36
Document Type: ALS
SOCIETY OF FRENCH ARTISTS
168 NEW BOND STREET,
My dear Mr Whistler,
Before answering your letter, let me express my satisfaction at hearing that your health is improving. Believe me not only myself & my wife, but everybody who heard of your illness, sympathized with you; though I have not sent any one to enquire, for the last week or so, I was constantly hearing about you. -
At the back of the picture of the "Yacht Race" is a small white ticket or label with the following inscription:
"The Yacht Race
A Symphony in B Sharp.
(Signed) J. Whistler.["]
[p. 2] I naturally copied this same inscription, wishing to give your own title & knowing how particular you are about such things. -
You really do the "Club", if you mean the Hogarth, injustice! You will find no body of men more sympathetic to you and more respectful with regard to your work. - As to myself, I am astonished that you should have ever dream't for a moment of my playing you a "hoax", or indulging in a joke at the expense of a work of yours. -
Poor Observer critic! It does not require much mind to find out puns in a serious man's wordings. - What a boon for the Observer critic to have found out some joke to dwell upon and gloat over!
[p. 3] If I have done wrong, it is because I followed your own instructions to the letter. -
The Yacht Race even as it is, is a beautiful picture; for my own part I prefer the frame as it is; rough, simple, ugly even, but it holds a jewel. - You cannot think how the picture has been admired, and how my wife has been envied for possessing it. -
I send you this, my justification, by bearer, who will, if necessary, testify to the existence of the above mentioned label signed by yourself. -
I sincerely hope your convalescence will be a short one, and that you will be able to take up with renewed vigour the marvelous quantity of beautiful work you have in hand.
A word by bearer to -
Yours most sincerely
Chs W Deschamps.
[p. 4] I forgot to say that, should it be your wish, I will instantly withdraw the picture
for from the gallery. - I[t] will be delightful for me to have it back again at home. -
1. [10/22 November 1873]
This is a reply to JW's letter (#13487) and must date from after a review in the Athenaeum (Athenaeum, 8 November 1873, p. 601) but before publication of JW's letter on 22 November (Whistler, James McNeill, [Letter to the Editor], The Athenaeum, no. 2404, 22 November 1873, p. 666, #13150).
4. Society of French Artists
This letter is about the 7th Exhibition, Society of French Artists, London, 1873.
6. Yacht Race
Trouville (YMSM 70) was exhibited at the 7th Exhibition, Society of French Artists, London, 1873 (cat. no. 110) as 'The Yacht Race - A Symphony in B sharp'. In 1891 he sold the picture back to JW (see #00833).
London newspaper; reference not located.
JW had started to use frames painted with a design of feathers or scale-patterns, and signed with a butterfly.