La Mère Gérard

James McNeill Whistler American

Not on view

La Mère Gérard is said to have sold flowers outside the Bal Bullier in Paris, but Whistler shows her holding a shawl or piece of cloth in an unidealized portrayal that demonstrates admiration for the realism espoused by Courbet. The artist made the etching in Paris in the summer or fall of 1858 and included it in his first published set, "Douze eau-fortes d'apres Nature" ("Twelve Etchings from Nature"), known as the "French Set." This impression belonged to Thomas Winans, a Baltimore friend who financed the artist's move to Paris in 1855; Winans kept the print in an album that descendants gave to the Museum.

La Mère Gérard, James McNeill Whistler (American, Lowell, Massachusetts 1834–1903 London), Etching on tan chine on off-white wove paper (chine collé); fourth state of four (Glasgow)

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