The Paintings of James McNeill Whistler

YMSM 003
Portrait of Thomas Winans

Portrait of Thomas Winans

Artist: James McNeill Whistler
Date: 1854/1855
Collection: Whereabouts Unknown
Accession Number: none
Medium: oil
Support: unknown
Size: unknown
Signature: unknown
Inscription: unknown
Frame: unknown

Date

Portrait of Thomas Winans dates from 1854 or 1855. 1

On 5 August 1900 Whistler told Elizabeth Robins Pennell (1855-1936): 'Before I left America I painted portraits of Annie Denny, my cousin, and Tom Winans.' 2 Whistler stayed at Winans' Baltimore villa, 'Alexandroffsky', in 1854 and again in 1855. 3 However, Winans' journal makes no mention of a portrait. 4

Winans' villa 'Alexandroffsky', Baltimore, photo, Maryland Historical Society
Winans' villa 'Alexandroffsky', Baltimore, photo, Maryland Historical Society

Nor does a photograph of Winans' salon at 'Alexandroffsky' appear to show a portrait by Whistler, although there are several small works that are impossible to identify. The photograph does include a portrait of the elderly Ross Winans (1795-1877) by Francis Augustus Lathrop (1849-1909) at right, and Whistler's Wapping y035 on an easel to left of centre. 5

Images

Portrait of Thomas Winans, Whereabouts unknown
Portrait of Thomas Winans, Whereabouts unknown

Winans' villa 'Alexandroffsky', Baltimore, photograph, Maryland Historical Society
Winans' villa 'Alexandroffsky', Baltimore, photograph, Maryland Historical Society

Bergamasco, St Petersburg,  Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/159
Bergamasco, St Petersburg, Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/159

Kuhn & Cunnins, Baltimore, Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/158
Kuhn & Cunnins, Baltimore, Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/158

Subject

Titles

Only one title has been suggested:

Description

The portrait of a man aged about 35.

Sitter

Bergamasco, St Petersburg,  Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/159
Bergamasco, St Petersburg, Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/159

Kuhn & Cunnins, Baltimore, Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/158
Kuhn & Cunnins, Baltimore, Thomas Winans, photograph, GUL Whistler PH1/158

Thomas de Kay Winans (1820-1878).

The photographs from the Whistler collection in the University of Glasgow, reproduced here, are undated, but the Bergamasco photograph, taken in St Petersburg, probably shows Winans as a young man, and the Kuhn & Cunnins image may show him about the time that he was painted by Whistler in Baltimore.

Winans was Whistler's earliest patron and bought several of his early paintings (including Portrait of Anna Denny y004, The Fishwife y006, Copy after Boucher's 'Diane au bain' y020, and Wapping y035), as well as drawings and etchings.

He lent Whistler money and materials, and provided a studio at his luxurious villa, which he called Alexandroffsky after the family factory in Russia. His youngest brother, Walter Winans (1852-1920), was also painted by Whistler (see Portrait of Walter Winans y199).

Technique

Technique

It is not known if this painting was completed.

Conservation History

Unknown.

Frame

Unknown.

History

Provenance

Whistler's portrait of Winans probably disappeared at an early date, and the family could find no record of it in 1947. 7

Exhibitions

It was not exhibited in Whistler's lifetime.

Bibliography

Catalogues Raisonnés

Authored by Whistler

Catalogues 1855-1905

Journals 1855-1905

Monographs

Books on Whistler

Books, General

Catalogues 1906-Present

Journals 1906-Present

Websites

Unpublished

Other


Notes:

1: YMSM 1980 [more] (cat. no. 3).

2: Pennell 1921C [more], p. 171.

3: Pressley 1972 [more], at pp. 134-35.

4: Maryland Historical Society, Baltimore, MD.

5: Toutziari, Georgia, Anna Matilda Whistler's correspondence: An annotated edition, PhD thesis, University of Glasgow, 2002, online at http://theses.gla.ac.uk/3779.

6: YMSM 1980 [more] (cat. no. 3).

7: Mrs Ross Whistler to J. Revillon, 17 November 1947, GUL WPP files.