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The Embroidered Curtain

The Embroidered Curtain
etching, 1889, printed in brown, on laid paper, watermark Pro Patria, signed with the butterfly on the tab and annotated imp, a fine, luminous impression of the lightly etched first state (of seven), in addition to the 27 impressions in all states recorded so far by the Whistler Etchings Project, trimmed to the plate as published, in very good condition
Image, Sheet: 9½ x 6¼ in. (240 x 159 mm.)
Robert Rice, his mark verso (not in Lugt)
Gordon Cooke Ltd., London, February 17, 1989
Kennedy 410; Glasgow 451

Condition report

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Lot Essay

'Mr Whistler is not given to paying compliments to himself ... but in the chat I had with him over a cup of tea he admitted that his etchings of Amsterdam were, in his opinion, the best work he had ever given to the public. Last November Mr Whistler looked about him for new worlds to conquer, and elected to visit Amsterdam, which he thinks one of the most picturesque cities in Europe. He packed up his copper plates, his wax candles, his acids, his etching needles, and the various tools of the etcher, and proceeded to the quaint old capital of the Low Countries. The result will be given to the world in a series of ten etchings, which are practically completed. Proofs of these, enclosed in their dainty frames of white with black bars, reposed on the studio floor with their faces to the wall, and one after the other they were placed on the easel ... Here ... is a proof which Mr Whistler calls "the embroidered curtain". It [the curtain] hangs in a window overlooking one of the canals, and the delicate tracery of the pattern has been worked out to the minutest detail.' A Chat With Mr Whistler, Pall Mall Budget, 13 March 1890, cited on the Whistler Etchings Project website.

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