Wych Street, London
|Size:||216 x 139 mm|
|No. of States:||2|
|Catalogues:||K.159; M.156; W.132|
|Impressions taken from this plate (12)|
One impression of Wych Street, London has extensive additions in black and grey watercolor to indicate or enhance the details and shading in the distant background (). These were not carried out on the copper plate. The composition was mainly etched, possibly with some drypoint on the lamp. Either the lamp faded completely or Whistler intended to alter it, so it does not appear in the second state.
There may have been a print-run of a dozen impressions of Wych Street, London. The first and second proofs of the first state were annotated by Whistler and signed with a butterfly dating from 1877/1878 (, ). The first of these has extensive but subtle additions in black and grey watercolour to indicate or enhance the details and shading in the distant background. It was printed on ivory laid paper removed from a book, with old pen inscriptions on the verso.
Whistler retained the copper plate in good condition. It was one of a very few plates that he took up again and reprinted in 1887, keeping records as he went. Thus he printed three impressions of Wych Street, London and three of Amsterdam, from the Tolhuis  on 8 February 1887. 14 These late impressions can tentatively be identified because they are signed with a later butterfly (). One - the second state - is trimmed to the platemark and signed on the tab with a butterfly dating from 1887 and 'imp.' to show that Whistler printed it ().
14: List, [25 September 1887], GUW #12716.