Artist: James McNeill Whistler
Completion Date: 1865
Dimensions: 72.4 x 59.1 cm
When Whistler failed to qualify for West Point in 1851, he turned his attention to art. He moved to Paris and studied under Gleyre, the same school Claude Monet and Camille Pissarro attended later, in the 1860's. Like Edouard Manet, Whistler was initially influenced by Gustav Courbet. Being slightly older than most early Impressionists, by the time they gained momentum in Paris, Whistler had already established a studio in London. Nevertheless, he exhibited at the Salon des Refuses (the first Impressionist exhibition) in 1874.
Whistler's work is often compared to William Turner, an English painter from 50 years earlier, but Turner specialized in texture and colour: Whistlers areas of interest were value and composition, which shine in the painting I have selected. An artist studying how to turn a good painting, into great painting, would benefit by analyzing these two aspects of his work.
Being a studio painter he relied on sketches and his memory. In that Whistler differs from his contemporary Impressionists who were great believers in "Plein Air" painting from life.
Whistler passed on, 17 July 1903 in London, England
|I love this. Only Whistler would be brave enough to paint a face in his moon on a fine art painting|