Portrait of Miss Caird dates from 1875. 1
Whistler wrote to Frances Leyland (1834-1910), probably in September 1875,
'Miss Caird came on the Tuesday instead of Wednesday ... She stands very untireingly [sic] though I fear she must have found that day in the Studio rather a dull one - for Horace who might have relieved the monotony of work with his piano did not turn up until the next day! -
The picture draws near its completion and I was able to persuade Miss Caird to give me another sitting on the Thursday - She left the same evening for Wales - but I hope may come back in about a week and give me a couple more sittings if possible - for I am most anxious to finish - that the picture may not be lost - and that she may not weary of it now that I have so nearly done.' 2
In this letter to Mrs Leyland, Whistler also referred to his various commissions from her husband, Frederick Richards Leyland (1832-1892).
It is possible Miss Caird was standing in for Mrs Leyland's own portrait (Symphony in Flesh Colour and Pink: Portrait of Mrs Frances Leyland [YMSM 106]) which had been exhibited by the time of the letter cited above, although not delivered to Leyland. However, she may well have been posing for her own portrait: if so it has not survived.
Last updated: 15th November 2019 by Margaret