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arkwright

Whistler's Mother

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Arrangement in Grey and Black No.1 is a painting created by the American-born painter James McNeill Whistler in 1871 and now in the Musée d'Orsay in Paris. It is one of the most famous works by an American artist outside the United States. Better known under its colloquial name Whistler's Mother, it has been variously described as an American icon and a Victorian Mona Lisa. Anna McNeill Whistler posed for the painting while living in London with her son.

Several unverifiable stories relate to the painting of the work. One of these has recently been confirmed by researchers in the department of Art History at the Sorbonne. As the story goes, Whistler’s mother considered the long hours of posing as wasted time, and as she had recently started to learn to play the concertina from her Irish housekeeper, she practiced while posing for the now-famous painting. Her son painted her with the concertina but later decided to paint out the concertina, because he wanted to enter it in the Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Art, and felt that the judges would prefer it without the concertina. Intrigued by the story, Marcel Lachenal (a distant relative of Louis Lachenal) had the painting x-rayed, and we are now able to see, after 140 years, the original Whistler's Mother.post-12333-0-33563100-1495164475_thumb.jpg

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What a fascinating story - and it looks like she's playing an anglo! Has this research been published by the Sorbonne yet?

Adrian

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What, if anything, is known about Lorraine Fletcher who is credited with having added the somewhat out of proportion hands, and the Anglo ?

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Brilliant!

 

Notice how she seems to be playing Shepherd's Hey?

Edited by Jody Kruskal

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Note how well he has captured the "concertina player's face".......so close to a drool.

Edited by Robin Harrison

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What, if anything, is known about Lorraine Fletcher who is credited with having added the somewhat out of proportion hands, and the Anglo ?

Ms. Fletcher is an Irish artist who graciously allowed me to (ab)use her painting for this project. Check out her web site: http://www.lorrainefletcherartstudio.com/

 

Any misproportioning of hands is the result of my own incompetence.

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I apologise. There is of course no standard size for hands !

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