The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

return to search results

Documents associated with: 103rd exhibition, Ouvrages de peinture, sculpture, architecture, gravure et lithographie des artistes vivants, Palais des Champs Elysées, Paris, 1885
Record 11 of 15

System Number: 09206
Date: [23 June 1885][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: George Aloysius Lucas[2]
Place: Paris
Repository: Baltimore Museum of Art, MD
Call Number: 22 folder, W-Lucas file
Document Type: ALS

'[Date received?] 23 June 1885[3]'

"The Vale"
Kings Road. Chelsea

My dear Lucas -

I never by any means have a line from you! - Admitting that I am the worst correspondant [sic] in Europe, surely you are the next bad one -

Besides, lately, I have more than once sent you a greeting of some kind - and always with like result - absolute silence! -

What do you think of my picture [p. 2] at the Salon[4]? -

Do you like it? - They tell me that it is hung in a delightful place and that all the world is greatly exercised concerning it - Of course they give me no more medals -

Now will you do one thing for me - I do so want a very fine photograph of this picture of Lady Archibald Campbell[5] - and I am told that Braun[6] is the man in Paris best able to do it -

Will you see him for me and order from him the negative? -

Say that I want him to take with the greatest care a superb photograph - (not too big - about the size of those that you have of mine - or the usual size of the full lengths in the galleries) - of my picture of Lady Archibald in the Salon -

I want it done at once - and I want a proof or two sent to me immediately - and then I must also have the plate - that is the negative -

Do all this for me my dear Lucas - and I shall be so greatly pleased and reconnaissant[7] -

Maud[8] sends love to you and Madame[9], and wishes you to know that she has been very ill indeed [p. 3] and proposes to come over to stay with you for a week or two if you will have her, either in Paris or the Country - in short wherever you may be she boldly pretends to make a descent upon you! - Meanwhile make my apologies to Madame - and write and let us know what you both think of this daring proposition -

With kindest regards

[butterfly signature]

Wouldn't you like to have heard my "Ten o'clock"[10]? -

This document is protected by copyright.


'Whistler June 23 1885
ans[wered] Juin 29th dated [illegible word]'

A Boissise la Bertrand
Par Melun Seine et Marne
Monsieur George Lucas.
21. Rue de l'Arc de Triomphe
Barière de l'Etoile
[postmark:] WEST BROMPTON S. W. / 4 5 / JU23 / 85
[postmark:] CALAIS A PARIS 1º / 24 / JUIN / [...]
[postmark on verso x 2:] PARIS LES TERNES / [...] 24 / JUIN / 85
[postmark on verso:] MELUN / SEINE ET MARNE / 1 25 / JUIN / 85


1.  [23 June 1885]
Dated from postmark.

2.  George Aloysius Lucas
George Aloysius Lucas (1824-1909), art dealer in Paris [more].

3.  [Date received?] 23 June 1885
Written in another hand.

4.  Salon
A reference to the 103rd exhibition, Ouvrages de peinture, sculpture, architecture, gravure et lithographie des artistes vivants, Palais des Champs Elysées, Paris, 1885. JW showed two works, Arrangement in Black: La Dame au brodequin jaune - Portrait of Lady Archibald Campbell (YMSM 242), cat. no. 2459, and Arrangement en couleur chair et noir: Portrait de Théodore Duret (YMSM 252), cat. no. 2460.

5.  Lady Archibald Campbell
Janey Sevilla Campbell (ca 1846 - d.1923), née Callander, Lady Archibald Campbell [more].

6.  Braun
Adolphe Braun (1812-1877), founder of the Paris photographic firm [more].

7.  reconnaissant
Fr., grateful.

8.  Maud
Mary Maud Franklin (1857- ca 1941), JW's model and mistress [more]. According to Lucas's diary, he did not write inviting her to visit until 12 August. Maud and her sister arrived in Paris on 24 August. She stayed until 28 September. See Randall, Lillian, ed., George A. Lucas: An American Art Agent in Paris, 1857-1909, Princeton, 1979, 2 vols., vol. 2, pp. 613-14, 616.

9.  Madame
Octavie Josephine de Macedo-Carvalho (1833-1909), née Marchand, probable mistress of George A. Lucas [more].

10.  Ten o'clock
JW's 'Ten O'Clock Lecture' his major public statement of his aesthetic ideas. It was first delivered on 20 February 1885 at the Prince's Hall, Piccadilly, and repeated subsequently at several other venues, including Oxford and Cambridge. Lucas's diary records him reading it aloud to an invalid friend on 17 September 1885 (op. cit., p. 615).

11.  Whistler
This note is written in another hand in the left margin of the envelope.