Bead Stringers

Maker(s)
Artist: James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903)
Historical period(s)
1880
Medium
Crayon and pastel on brown paper
Dimensions
H x W: 27.6 x 11.7 cm (10 7/8 x 4 5/8 in)
Geography
United States
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1905.124a-b
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Drawing
Type

Drawing

Keywords
United States
Provenance
Provenance research underway.
Label

Here, as in most of his Venice pastels, Whistler sketched the outlines of his drawing with dark chalk, then added firm strokes of color to fill in the details of the figures, windows, drying clothes, and sky. Framed by the warm orange-brown of the lightly worked building walls, Whistler used cool whites, grays, and blues to establish the central subject and the regress to the background, before locking the harmonies into place with the dark greens of the shutters, the blacks of the women's shawls, and the deep browns that define the shadowy interior of the distant building.

Published References
  • Whistler portfolio. London. pl. 5.
  • Elizabeth Robins Pennell, Joseph Pennell. The Life of James McNeill Whistler. 2 vols., London and Philadelphia. vol. 1: p. 182.
  • Margaret F. MacDonald. James McNeill Whistler: Drawings, Pastels, and Watercolours : A Catalogue Raisonné. New Haven, 1995. .
  • Octave Maus. Whistler in Belgium. vol. 23, no. 89 New York, July 1904. p. 9.
  • Robin Spencer. James McNeill Whistler. British Artists. p. 60.
  • Margaret F. MacDonald. Palaces in the Night: Whistler in Venice. Aldershot, Hampshire, England, 2001. p. 61, fig. 70.
  • Thomas Robert Way, G. R. Dennis. The Art of James McNeill Whistler: An Appreciation by T.R. Way and G.R. Dennis. London, 1903. p. 92.
  • Warren Adelson, Elaine Kilmurray, Elizabeth Oustinoff, Richard Ormond, Rosella Mamoli Zorzi, William H. Gerdts. Sargent's Venice. London. p. 176, fig. 192.
  • David Park Curry. James McNeill Whistler at the Freer Gallery of Art. Washington and New York, 1984. p. 264, pl. 255.
Collection Area(s)
American Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
CC0 - Creative Commons (CC0 1.0)

This image is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

The information presented on this website may be revised and updated at any time as ongoing research progresses or as otherwise warranted. Pending any such revisions and updates, information on this site may be incomplete or inaccurate or may contain typographical errors. Neither the Smithsonian nor its regents, officers, employees, or agents make any representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the information on the site. Use this site and the information provided on it subject to your own judgment. The Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery welcome information that would augment or clarify the ownership history of objects in their collections.