James McNeill Whistler

James McNeill Whistler

James McNeill Whistler (1834—1903) was an influential American painter belonging to the American Gilded Age and, more properly, to European Aestheticism.

James McNeill Whistler Summary

  • Born in Lowell, Massachusetts, he had a formative period in St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Lived most of his life in London and was interred in Chiswick Old Cemetery in west London
  • Experimented with etching and photography; educated to be, first, a minister, then, a military map-maker
  • Considered his painting emotional compositions and often defined them as music
  • His portrait of his mother has become possibly the most famous of its kind
  • Parodically depicted by Oscar Wilde in the guise of Basil, the painter in The Picture of Dorian Grey

James McNeill Whistler’s Famous Paintings

  • Symphony in White, No. 1: The White Girl (1862)
  • Symphony in White, No. 2: The Little White Girl (1865)
  • The Princess from the Land of Porcelain (1865)
  • Arrangement in Grey and Black No.1 (1871)
  • Nocturne in Black and Gold: The Falling Rocket (1874)
  • Nocturne in Gray and Gold, Westminster Bridge (1874)
  • Nocturne (1877)
  • Nocturne in Pink and Gray, Portrait of Lady Meux (1881)
  • Blue and Coral The Little Blue Bonnet (1898)
  • Mother of Pearl and Silver: The Andalusian (1900)

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