James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903)

The Lime Burner London, 1859, published 1871 Etching with drypoint Plate: 25 x 18 cm; mount: 55.6 x 40.5 cm This is one of Sixteen Etchings of Scenes on the Thames which Whistler completed by 1861. They resulted from a campaign of drawing along the river in which the artist sought to document its everyday … Read more

James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903)

La vieille aux loques (The Old Rag-Picker) London, 1858  Etching 20.6 x 14.6 cm  An old woman sits in a doorway absorbed in sorting rags. Although the rag picker is shown as poor and frail, her focus and disengagement from the viewer creates a calm and contemplative image. The framing device of the doorway ensures … Read more

James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903)

The “Adam and Eve”, Old Chelsea London, 1879 Etching on fine Japanese paper 17.6 x 30.4 cm  Whistler’s depiction of life on the Thames in Chelsea is retrospective. This work shows an old riverside inn, The Adam and Eve, next to rows of dilapidated buildings which were demolished during the early 1870s to make way … Read more

Tales of the City

From bustling alleys and intricate architectural detail, to sweeping panoramas of grand public celebrations and towering monuments, this display of prints and drawings captures the vibrancy and expansion of European cities from the 17th to the 19th century.  Curated to mark the recent acquisition of two views of Paris after Thomas Girtin (right), it includes … Read more

First Impressions

Early Acquisitions of Prints for the Barber Collection The Barber Institute’s collection of works on paper is famed for its exemplary quality, due in no small part to the acquisitions of its first Director, Professor Thomas Bodkin. This display focuses on the prints purchased for the collection in 1939, the year the Barber Institute opened, … Read more

James McNeill Whistler (1834 – 1903)

Symphony in White, No.III London, about 1865-7 Oil on canvas 51.4 x 76.9 cm Whistler inscribed a musical title on this canvas to describe a painting of two young women dressed in white. The artist chose the term ‘Symphony’ to emphasise to visitors to the Royal Academy’s exhibition in 1867 that it was purely a … Read more