The Paintings of James McNeill Whistler

YMSM 301
Variations in Violet

Variations in Violet

Artist: James McNeill Whistler
Date: 1884
Collection: Whereabouts Unknown
Accession Number: none
Medium: oil
Support: unknown
Size: unknown
Signature: unknown
Inscription: unknown
Frame: unknown

Date

Variations in Violet may date from 1884. 1 It was first shown in Whistler's one-man exhibition of 'Notes' - 'Harmonies' - 'Nocturnes', Messrs Dowdeswell, London, 1884 (cat no. 30) as 'Variations in Violet'.

It was, unusually for Whistler, a flower painting. In the late summer of 1884 (after the closure of the exhibition) Whistler wrote to Charles William Dowdeswell (1832-1915), 'I am greatly pleased with you - I have a great opinion of your understanding now that you like the flower pieces!' 2 Unfortunately there is no further record of the 1884 flower painting.

Images

Variations in Violet, Whereabouts Unknown
Variations in Violet, Whereabouts Unknown

Subject

Titles

Only one title is known:

Description

It was described in the Liverpool Mercury on 3 July 1884 as 'a clever flower study'. As such, it is unusual in Whistler's subjects.

However, several flower compositions in pastel and watercolour were shown in the subsequent Dowdeswells' exhibition, including Mother of pearl and silver - Flowers m1107, A yellow note - Flowers m1108, and Studies of poppies m1109.

Technique

Technique

Nothing is known of the technique except that the painting was 'clever'. 5

Conservation History

Unknown.

Frame

Unknown.

History

Provenance

Exhibitions

It was described in the Liverpool Mercury on 3 July 1884 as 'a clever flower study.' 6

Bibliography

Catalogues Raisonnés

Authored by Whistler

Catalogues 1855-1905

Newspapers 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Unpublished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. 301).

2: 12/14 [August 1884], GUW #08613.

3: 'Notes' - 'Harmonies' - 'Nocturnes', Messrs Dowdeswell, London, 1884 (cat no. 30).

4: YMSM 1980 [more] (cat. no. 301).

5: Liverpool Mercury, Liverpool, 3 July 1884.

6: Press cutting in GUL Whistler PC 7, p. 13.