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Reading by Lamplight

Reading by Lamplight

Etching and drypoint printed on Japanese paper, 1858

Evidently observed from life, this print shows Whistler’s half-sister (and Haden’s wife) Deborah. Haden also made an etching of this scene at the same time, although his composition was in landscape rather than portrait format, and he subsequently added the figure of Annie, copied from Whistler’ separate etching (Annie, seated below). Like many of the etchings that Whistler and Haden made together at this time, the use of chiaroscuro and shading recalls Rembrandt; Whistler would have been increasingly familiar with Rembrandt’s etchings from his opportunity to view Haden’s fine collection at this time.

Given by Mrs T. H. Riches 1923

Collections record: P.2072-R

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