UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Amy Leslie Forster, ca 1853-??

Nationality: English
Date of Birth: 1853 ca
Place of Birth: Littlehampton
Date of Death:
Place of Death:

Identity:

Amy Leslie Forster, née Worth, was the wife of the barrister Matthew Forster. Their daughter, Yvonne (b. 21 October 1877), married Henry Dyson; Francis L. was born ca 1874; Evelyn A., ca 1876. They had two more daughters, Maude Elizabeth and Nina Dorothy.

Life:

JW was friendly with the Forster family (#07889, #08778), who lived at 37 Ennismore Gardens in Knightsbridge. In a letter to his sister-in-law Nellie, dated 16 December 1881, JW mentioned that he was working on a portrait of Amy Forster (#06695). Her portrait was still in his Tite Street studio in 1884 when the artists Walter Sickert and J. E. Blanche saw it there. It was apparently a 'black on black' portrait, but nothing further is known of it (Portrait of Mrs Forster (YMSM 234)). About 1881/1884 Whistler drew a picture of Amy Forster's daughter (Portrait of Miss Yvonne Forster (M.838)). Mrs Forster was among those invited to the private view of the Royal Society of British Artists 1887-88 winter exhibition (#13403). In 1892 she was also invited to the private view of JW's Goupil Gallery exhibition, Nocturnes, Marines and Chevalet Pieces (#08449).

Bibliography:

UK census 1881, from http://www.familysearch.org (accessed 2004); Young, Andrew McLaren, Margaret F. MacDonald, Robin Spencer and Hamish Miles, The Paintings of James McNeill Whistler, New Haven and London, 1980; MacDonald, Margaret F., James McNeill Whistler. Drawings, Pastels and Watercolours. A Catalogue Raisonné, New Haven and London, 1995.