Nocturne: The Thames at Battersea

Creation date
Mark Descriptions
butterfly signature in stone, L.R.
6 11/16 x 10 1/4 in (image) 13 1/2 x 19 1/4 in (sheet)
Credit line
Gift in memory of Kurt F. Pantzer, Sr.
Accession number
Not Currently On View

Whistler began painting "Moonlights" (later called "Nocturnes") in the late 1860s. In 1878, he captured one such effect of the warehouses at Battersea across the Thames from his residence in Chelsea. It is a lithotint-a process in which a mid-tone grain is applied to the lithographic stone in advance allowing the artist to simply reinforce shadows and scrape out highlights.

"And when the evening mist clothes the riverside with poetry, as with a veil, and the poor buildings lose themselves in the dim sky, and the tall buildings become campanili, and the warehouses are palaces of the night."
-J.A.M. Whistler, 1888
Reproduction of these images, including downloading, is prohibited without written authorization from VAGA.

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