UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 01651
Date: 12 June 1878
Author: Louis Gonse[1]
Place: Paris
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler G17
Document Type: ALS


GAZETTE DES BEAUX-ARTS
COURRIER EUROPÉEN DE L'ART ET DE LA CURIOSITÉ
FONDÉE EN 1859
CHRONIQUE DES ARTS
ET
DE LA CURIOSITÉ
SOCIÉTÉ FRANÇAISE DE GRAVURE

8, RUE FAVART, 8
PARIS,

LE 12 Juin 1878

Cher monsieur,

M. Blackburn[2] m'a remis votre petite planche - Port d'Amsterdam[3] avec une épreuve. Elle est charmante et je serais fort heureux de la faire paraître dans l'article consacré à vos eaux-fortes. Seulement, je crois que vous avez mal interpreté ma demande et que par ce fait nous ne nous entendons pas bien. Vous me demandez 63 f guinées pour cette planche soit plus de 2.000 francs, outre que le prix dépasse celui de la planche la plus chère parue dans la Gazette depuis sa fondation y compris les chefs-d'oeuvre [p. 2] de Jacquemart[4] et de Gaillard[5], il n'est pas dans les habitudes de la maison de payer les planches d'artistes qui accompagnent un compte-rendu de leur oeuvre. C'est ainsi que nous avons agi avec Meryon, Seymour-Haden, Edwards, Evershed, Legros[6], etc.

Du reste, la planche pourrait rester votre propriété. Nous la f vous la remettrions après avoir fait notre tirage. Il est entendu qu'elle serait aciérée.

Si ces conditions vous agréent, cher monsieur, je me ferai un vrai plaisir de faire dans la Gazette un article sur votre beau talent d'aquafortiste. Dans le cas contraire, je me verrais, avec mille regrets, dans la nécessité de vous renvoyer la planche que je me fusse fait cependant un véritable honneur de publier.

Veuillez agréer, cher monsieur, l'expression de mes meilleurs sentiments

Louis Gonse

[p. 3] 'Gazette Beaux Art[7]'


This document is protected by copyright.


Translation:

FINE ARTS GAZETTE
EUROPEAN DESPATCH FOR ARTS AND CURIOS
FOUNDED IN 1859
CHRONICLE OF ARTS
AND
CURIOS
FRENCH ENGRAVING SOCIETY

Dear Sir

Mr Blackburn has sent me your small plate - Port of Amsterdam with a print. It is charming and I would be very happy to have it printed in the article devoted to your etchings. However, I believe that you have misinterpreted my request and that for this reason we do not understand each other. You are asking me 63 guineas for this plate which is over 2,000 francs, apart from the price being higher than the most expensive which has ever appeared in the Gazette since its foundation including masterpieces [p. 2] by Jacquemart and Gaillard, it is not the practice of the Society to pay for artists' plates which are part of an article about their work. This is what we agreed with Meryon, Seymour-Haden, Edwards, Evershed, Legros, etc.

Besides, the plate could remain your property. We would return it to you after having made our prints. It is understood that it would be steel faced.

If you agree to these conditions, dear sir, it will give me great pleasure to do an article in the Gazette on your fine talent as an etcher. If not, I shall, with great regret, find it necessary to return to you the plate which I would nevertheless have been truly honoured to have published.

Yours faithfully

Louis Gonse


Notes:

1.  Louis Gonse
Louis Gonse (1846-1921), writer and art critic, director of the Gazette des Beaux-Arts [more]. This is the second of two letters from Gonse requesting etchings and a copper-plate for publication in the Gazette des beaux-arts (see his letter of 7 February 1878, #01650). This letter, with the omission of Blackburn's name, and with Louis Gonse's name replaced by 'Le Directeur de la Gazette des Beaux-Arts', was published as 'An Opportunity', and JW's reply (#01652) as 'The Opportunity Neglected', in Whistler, James McNeill, The Gentle Art of Making Enemies, London and New York, 1890, pp. 181-83.

2.  Blackburn
Unidentified.

3.  Port d'Amsterdam
Amsterdam from the Tolhuis (K.91), originally dating from 1863, which JW had newly signed, probably with the intention of selling it to the Gazette des beaux-arts.

4.  Jacquemart
Jules-Ferdinand Jacquemart (1837-1880), water-colourist and etcher [more], whose work appeared in an extensive article by L. Gonse, 'L'oeuvre de J. Jacquemart', Gazette des beaux-arts, 1875, I, pp. 559 ff., II, pp. 69 ff., 240 ff., 326 ff., 527 ff.; 1876, I, pp. 471 ff., 671 ff.

5.  Gaillard
Claude-Ferdinand Gaillard (1834-1887), painter and printmaker [more].

6.  Meryon, Seymour-Haden, Edwards, Evershed, Legros
Gonse published an important article on Charles Méryon (1821-1868), etcher [more], by P. Burty, 'L'oeuvre de C. Méryon', Gazette des Beaux-Arts, 1863, vol. 14, pp. 519-33; and vol. 15, pp. 75-88. Burty also wrote about Francis Seymour Haden (1818-1910), surgeon and etcher, JW's brother-in-law [more] (1864, vol. 17, pp. 271-87, 365-66). Edwin Edwards (1823-1879), lawyer, painter and etcher [more], figures in an article in 1868, II, pp. 72, 275-76. Dr Arthur Evershed (1836-1919), physician, landscape painter and etcher [more], was represented in 1876, II, pp. 438 ff., with two original etchings. Alphonse Legros (1837-1911), painter, etcher and art teacher [more].

7.  Gazette Beaux Art
Written by Beatrix Whistler (1857-1896), née Beatrice Philip, artist [more], presumably after 1888, when she helped JW sort his records.