UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 05776
Date: 6 May 1893
Author: David Croal Thomson[1]
Place: London
Recipient: JW
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler T121
Document Type: ALS


[Royal coat of arms]
THE GOUPIL GALLERY
BOUSSOD, VALADON & CO.
116 & 117, NEW BOND STREET. W.
TELEGRAMS, - BOUSSOD, LONDON.
[stamped:] REMOVED TO
5, REGENT STREET, S. W.
AND
10, CHARLES STREET,
ST JAMES'S, S. W.

London

May 6th 1893.

Dear Sir,

I should be glad to hear what you would like done about the Sarasate[2] for we think it would sell.

We would also be prepared to make an arrangement about a set of Paris Etchings[3] in Portfolios. - Qu'en pensez vous?[4]

Chicago[5]. Nothing more has been done [p. 2] so far as we know

I hope to be in Paris about the 24th of May & will let you know more precisely a little later -

R. A.[6] Very poor exhibition. Depressing, dis heartening, disgusting!

New Gallery[7]. Much better & in some ways very good indeed & in my case it is alive & interesting.

Please think about the Etchings

Yours very truly

pp BOUSSOD VALADON & CO.

D C Thomson

MANAGER.

J McN. Whistler Eq

over[8]

P. S.[9] Will you permit The Art Journal [10]to make a block (about 5 in high) of Sarasate?

[p. 3] Enclosed is paragraph from book published by Methuen & Co[,] Life & Works of John Ruskin[11] which mentions you. There is no other mention.

Would you reply through the A. J.?

[p. 4][12]  433. 25  
        4  
  1733.00[13]  
     
          
  493.55  
     
  400 -   16  
  110   14  
  500 00 - 20  
  493.55 10  
      6.45  

 

[p. 5][14] [Royal coat of arms]

[Design with large 'G':] GOUPIL & CO.
BOUSSOD, VALADON & CO.
SUCCESSORS.

TELEGRAMS, BOUSSOD, LONDON.
TELEPHONE NO. 3689.
LONDON.
116 & 117, NEW BOND STREET,/W.
[stamped:] REMOVED TO
5, REGENT STREET,
PALL MALL, S. W.

Extract from
"The Life & Work of John Ruskin"

There was another reason why that spontaneous testimonial was welcome at the moment for a curious and unaccustomed ordeal was impending for Mr Ruskin's[15] claims as an Art Critic. On his return from Venice after months of intercourse with the great old [p. 6] Masters, he found the Grosvenor Gallery [16]just opened for the first time with its memorable exhibition of the different extra-academical schools. It placed before the public, in sharp contrast, the final out come of Pre-Raphaelitism for which Mr Ruskin had fought many a year before and samples of the last new fashion from Paris. The maturer works of Mr Burne Jones[17] had been practically unseen by the public and Mr Ruskin took the opportunity of their exhibition to write his praise of the youngest of the Old Masters in the current number of Fors[18], and afterwards [p. 7] in two papers on the "Three Colours of Pre Raphaelitism" (Nin[e]teenth Century Magazine[19] November & December 1878). But in the same Fors he dismissed with half a paragraph of contempt Mr Whistler's eccentric sketch of Fireworks[20]. Long before in 1863 when he was working with various artists connected with the Pre-Raphaelite circle, Mr Whistler had made overtures to the great critic through Mr Swinburne[21] the poet but he had not taken it seriously. Now he had become the missionary of England of the new French Gospel of impressionism which to Mr Ruskin was one of those half truths which are ever the worst of heresies. Mr [p. 8] Whistler appealed to the law. He brought an action for libel which was tried on November 25th & 26th before Baron Huddleston[22], and recovered a farthing damages. Mr Ruskin's costs, amounting to £386.12.4, were paid by a public subscription to which one hundred and twenty persons including many strangers contributed.


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Notes:

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

2.  Sarasate
Arrangement in Black: Portrait of Señor Pablo de Sarasate (YMSM 315).

3.  Paris Etchings
This proposal came to nothing. Recent etchings included Atelier de Bijouterie (K.433) and Rue de la Rochefoucault (K.419).

4.  Qu'en pensez vous?
Fr., What do you think about it?

5.  Chicago
World's Columbian Exposition, Department of Fine Arts, Chicago, 1893.

6.  R. A.
Double underlined.

7.  New Gallery
Exhibition not identified.

8.  over
Double underlined.

9.  P. S. ... Sarasate?
This line is added in the space at the top of p. 1.

10.  Art Journal
Thomson was Editor of The Art Journal. The painting was not reproduced and JW did not respond to the quoation from Ruskin.

11.  Life & Works of John Ruskin
William Gershom Collingwood, The Life and Work of John Ruskin, London, 1893, on John Ruskin (1819-1900), critic, social reformer and artist [more].

12.  [p. 4]
These sums are in JW's hand, written upside-down on sheet.

13.  1733...
The total was triple underlined.

14.  [p. 5]
Pp. 5-8 have been copied by a clerk.

15.  Ruskin
John Ruskin (1819-1900), critic, social reformer and artist [more].

16.  Grosvenor Gallery
1st Summer Exhibition, Grosvenor Gallery, London, 1877.

17.  Burne Jones
Edward Coley Burne-Jones (1833-1898), painter and designer [more].

18.  Fors
Ruskin, John, 'Letter the Seventy-ninth' Fors Clavigera, 2 July 1877, pp. 181-213.

19.  Nineteenth Century
John Ruskin, 'The Three Colours of Pre-Raphaelitism,' in The Works of John Ruskin, E. T. Cook and A. Wedderburn (eds.), 39 vols., London, 1903-12, vol. 34, p. 163.

20.  Fireworks
Nocturne in Black and Gold: The Falling Rocket (YMSM 170).

21.  Swinburne
Algernon Charles Swinburne (1837-1909), poet and critic [more].

22.  Baron Huddleston
Sir John Walter Huddleston (1817-1890), High Court Justice, Exchequer Division [more].