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Whistler on Art

James McNeill Whistler

Edited by Nigel Thorp

Cover Picture of Whistler on Art
Categories: 19th Century, 20th Century, American, Art
Imprint: Fyfield Books
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Available as:
Paperback (240 pages)
(Pub. Aug 2004)
Out of Stock
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  • The masterpiece should appear as the flower to the painter - perfect in its bud as in its bloom - with no reason to explain its presence - no mission to fulfil - a joy to the artist - a delusion to the philanthropist - a puzzle to the botanist -
        From Propositions - No. 2, May 1884

    James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903) was a central figure in the artistic life of mid-nineteenth-century Paris and London. His distinct aesthetic, with its emphasis on appreciating a work of art as an arrangement of colours, lines and shapes, can be seen as the forerunner of the abstract art of the twentieth century.

    Whistler on Art brings together a selection of his letters, interviews and other writings, many previously unpublished. In letters to other artists, family, patrons - even Queen Victoria - Whistler discusses his principles of composition, his use the terms 'Nocturne' and 'Symphony' as titles, the rights of dealers and owners, and his celebrated libel suit against John Ruskin. The collection illuminates not only the work of a major artist, but a whole artistic milieu at a point of change.
    James McNeill Whistler
    James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), the American-born painter and etcher, became a crucial link between the Paris and London art worlds of the mid-nineteenth century. Influenced first by Courbet's realism, he evolved his own distinctive aesthetic, stressing 'an arrangement of line, form and colour first'. His Nocturnes are among the most highly-regarded ... read more
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