The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 08219
Date: [20 February 1892][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: David Croal Thomson[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 3
Document Type: ALS

[date stamp:] GOUPIL & COMPANY
20 FEB. 92


33. Rue de Tournon - Paris -

If you write tomorrow - I shall get your letter on Sunday -

Dear Sir -

Cards - Those you sent are of course very impossible! - You want a large invitation card - quite plain - and engraved - You had better ask Mr. Way[3]. He will show you the ones I have had for the Exhibitions at Messrs Dowdeswells[4] - and you can then have a trial one written out and sent to me for any alteration -

Date - Here I can scarcely help you - I have done what I could - even to writing over to America for the picture of "Wapping"[5] - but the people are so long in answering and so difficult about lending -

[p. 2] It would I think myself perhaps not so much matter after all as to number of works - on the whole it is not proposed that there should be other than a small collection - hung in groups in the large Gallery - more or less in the centres of the four walls - I think you might go yourself and see Mr. Alexander[6] - (Aubrey House) and ask him if, now that the large portrait of his daughter is cleaned and varnished, he will not be pleased to let you have it for the short space of four weeks - so that the people may see it in its splendid condition - and propose that he himself would like to see it there, now that it is so much envied - Of course get his Nocturne[7] - By the way I think it would be most effective if the Exhibition were announced as of only three[8] weeks duration - It is much more smart and select - and rare - Mr Thomson[9] of the Pall Mall could be told this - and I am sure he will be pleased to do any thing. Write to Mr. Graham Robertson[10] and borrow his "Valparaiso[11]," and of course if he will lend it, the "Miss Corder[12]" - He would I think would for such a particular occasion, especially as he would have it back befor[e] the season really begins - (you can show him this letter)

[p. 3] Write[13] to Madame Reveillon[14]. 43. Galernaia. St. Petersbourg - Russia - and borrow her picture of "The Music Room[15]" - by me - I shall write also - It would of course have to be sent by Grande Vitesse [16]-

Harrison[17] - Of course undertake the expense of bringing his picture from Henley -

Portraits - Again I am not at all of opinion that we do want any at of them in this Exhibition - Neither the Miss Alexander[18] or Corder - or any -

Why not simply Nocturnes - Sea pieces - and Chevalet paintings? - We are certainly not pretending to show a summed up collection of Whistler. Only. It is a bad policy in my opinion to fire off such a lot of things at once - Remember there is next year!

Yours faithfully

J McN Whistler

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [20 February 1892]
From dated stamp of receipt. This is a reply to Thomson's letter of the same date (#05685).

2.  David Croal Thomson
David Croal Thomson (1855-1930), art dealer [more]. He was organising JW's retrospective exhibition Nocturnes, Marines and Chevalet Pieces, Boussod, Valadon & Cie, Goupil Gallery, London, 1892.

3.  Mr. Way
Thomas Way (1837-1915), lithographic printer [more].

4.  Messrs Dowdeswells
'Notes' - 'Harmonies' - 'Nocturnes', Messrs Dowdeswell, London, 1884 and 'Notes' - 'Harmonies' - 'Nocturnes', Second Series, Messrs Dowdeswell, London, 1886.

5.  "Wapping"
Wapping (YMSM 35). The picture was owned by Celeste Marguerite Winans (1855-1916), later Mrs Hutton, daughter of T. and C. Winans [more].

6.  Mr. Alexander
William Cleverly Alexander (1840-1916), banker and patron [more].

7.  Nocturne
Nocturne: Blue and Silver - Chelsea (YMSM 103).

8.  three
Double underlined.

9.  Mr Thomson
George Thomson, journalist [more].

10.  Mr. Graham Robertson
Walford Graham Robertson (1867-1948), painter, designer and collector [more].

11.  Valparaiso
Crepuscule in Flesh Colour and Green: Valparaiso (YMSM 73).

12.  Miss Corder
Arrangement in Brown and Black: Portrait of Miss Rosa Corder (YMSM 203).

13.  Write
This paragraph has 'cges' (charges) written against it in left margin.

14.  Madame Reveillon
Julia de Kay Revillon (1855-1930), née Whistler, JW's niece [more].

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

16.  Grande Vitesse
Fr., express post.

17.  Harrison
Robert Hichens Camden Harrison (1837?-1924), collector [more].

18.  Miss Alexander
Harmony in Grey and Green: Miss Cicely Alexander (YMSM 129).