James McNeill Whistler

James McNeill Whistler, Nude Model, Standing, lithograph 1891

Nude Model, Standing

[Modèle Nu, Debout]

Way 154, Levi 48, Spink, Stratis & Tedeschi  48

lithograph, most probably 1891, a fine trial proof impression, the only known state, printed in black on thin greyish-white chine paper, good margins, finely backed on a medium-weight wove paper with slight horizontal undulations, a short repaired tear in the lower left margin, slight staining from an old mount along the margins well outside the image, with two hinges on the upper sheet edge, verso, otherwise in quite good condition

P. 189 x 109 mm., S.  260 x 150 mm.

Thomas Way included this lithograph in the revised edition of his catalogue raisonné in 1905, though it there remained undated.  Spink, Stratis, and Tedeschi have since undertaken a refined study of this print, ascertaining that it was clearly a part of Whistler's experiments undertaken at the Parisian imprimeur Belfond in the autumn of 1891, although they stipulate that

"whether he intended this drawing as a potential keystone for a color lithograph must remain a matter of speculation."

It is known that Whistler was working on a number of colour lithographs in Paris between 1891-1893*, only a few of which came to fruition, and there are no known colour trials of this particular print.

Spink, Stratis, and Tedeschi identify only eight known impressions of this lithograph, which was never published, and thus is exceedingly rare. 

In our view, this elegant, if sketchy, nude study is one of the finest of Whistler's late period.

*  See https://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/gallery/whistler/lithographs.html and, for example https://www.nga.gov/collection/art-object-page.33706.html, as well as https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/372932