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James McNeill Whistler

May 28 – August 20, 1995
West Building Main Floor

This exhibition is no longer on view at the National Gallery.

Overview: 64 paintings, 83 drawings, 48 prints, and 4 books from the National Gallery's collection and other public and private collections were gathered in a survey of Whistler's career. The exhibition, which included Arrangement in Gray and Black: Portrait of the Artist's Mother, was the most important retrospective of the artist's work since the memorial exhibitions in 1904-1905.

A 17-minute video program, James McNeill Whistler: The Lyrics of Art, was shown continuously adjacent to the exhibition. It was supported by the International Corporate Circle of the National Gallery of Art. A symposium on Whistler's life and art was held June 2-3. This exhibition was on view concurrently with Prints by James McNeill Whistler and His Contemporaries at the National Gallery. 2 other exhibitions on Whistler were on display in Washington over the summer, one at the National Portrait Gallery and the other at the Freer Gallery of Art.

Organization: The exhibition was organized as a collaboration of the Tate Gallery, London; the Réunion des musées nationaux and the Musée d'Orsay, Paris; and the National Gallery of Art, Washington. The curators were Richard Dorment, writer and critic; Margaret F. MacDonald, research fellow at the Centre for Whistler Studies at the University of Glasgow; Geneviève Lacambre, conservateur général du patrimoine at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris; and Nicolai Cikovsky Jr., curator of American and British paintings at the National Gallery of Art.

Sponsor: The exhibition was made possible by a grant from NYNEX Foundation. It was also supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.

Image: James McNeill Whistler, Beach Scene, probably 1885, watercolor on off-white paper mounted on paperboard, Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mellon, in Honor of the 50th Anniversary of the National Gallery of Art, 1991.7.3

Attendance: 182,886

Catalog: James McNeill Whistler, by Richard Dorment and Margaret MacDonald, with Nicolai Cikovsky Jr., Ruth E. Fine, and Geneviève Lacambre. London: Tate Gallery Publications, 1994.

Brochure: James McNeill Whistler, by Charles Brock. Washington, DC: National Gallery of Art, 1995.

Other Venues: Tate Gallery, London, October 24, 1994–January 8, 1995
Musée d'Orsay, Paris, February 6–April 30, 1995

Whistler, James McNeill
American, 1834 - 1903