James McNeill Whistler, “En Plein Soleil,” 1858, etching, 26 x 29.4 cm. (c) The Fine Art Society 2016

Andrew Webster Reporting

The largest and most comprehensive exhibition of prints by the renowned James McNeill Whistler in nearly a half-century will open on April 5 in London. Who’s the lucky host?
The Fine Art Society in London is celebrating its 140th anniversary with a monumental — and historic — exhibition of prints by the acclaimed artist James McNeill Whistler. In the largest and most comprehensive exhibition of Whistler’s prints in 45 years, 80 works will hang in the prestigious institution from April 5 through April 28. The exhibition will feature a variety of works that display Whistler’s style through each phase of his career. “Early works include studies of his family and prints published in the French Set in 1858,” the society website reports. “This was followed by the etchings of the Thames which were the foundation of his reputation. The famous Venice set, commissioned by The Fine Art Society and first exhibited in the gallery in 1883 will also be on show. The exhibition will include a number of Whistler’s rare Amsterdam etchings. He discussed their publication with The Fine Art Society in 1889, but the set was never issued. The artist considered them his greatest achievement.

James McNeill Whistler, “Maud, Standing,” 1876-1878, drypoint, 22.6 x 14.9 cm. (c) The Fine Art Society 2016

“Whistler’s long association with The Fine Art Society makes this exhibition an appropriate way to mark the 140th anniversary. Whistler is one of the small group of artists whose work as a printmaker would ensure their importance in the history of art. He stands with Dürer, Rembrandt, Goya and Picasso in this quality.”
“James McNeill Whistler Prints” opens on April 5 and will hang through April 28. To learn more, visit The Fine Art Society.
This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.


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