The Village Sweet Shop

Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 266
Date: 1886
Medium: etching
Size: 82 x 124 mm
Signed: butterfly at right
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 1
Known impressions: 14
Catalogues: K.251; M.247; W.205
Impressions taken from this plate  (14)


The Village Sweet Shop was not published.


Impressions were exhibited at two important international exhibitions, Brussels in 1888 and the World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. 16

16: Brussels 1888 (cat. no. 6); Chicago 1893 (cat. no. 254).

It was also shown in America in the exhibition organised by the Caxton Club in Chicago in 1900, lent by Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2510103). Other impressions were exhibited by a print dealer, H. Wunderlich & Co. in New York, in 1898 and 1903. 17

17: Chicago 1900 (cat. no. 181); see REFERENCES : EXHIBITIONS.

Finally, impressions were lent to the major Memorial Exhibitions after Whistler's death, including the Grolier Club, New York, in 1904 and the London show of 1905, when one from the Royal Collection was exhibited (Graphic with a link to impression #K2510118) . 18

18: New York 1904a (cat. no. 213); London Mem. 1905 (cat. no. 205).


This was a popular subject and the price was quickly raised by Whistler. He sold one impression to the London print dealer Thomas M. McLean (b. ca 1832) in May 1887 for £6.6.0, and three more at £7.7.0 each to Messrs Dowdeswell in July. 19 One of these may have been the impression acquired by Henry Studdy Theobald (1847-1934) and later by Clarence Buckingham (1855-1913) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2510102).

19: 17 May 1887, GUW #13011; 27 July 1887, #08677.

Whistler then raised the price considerably, selling one to Boussod, Valadon & Cie on 19 November 1887, and another to Wunderlich's of New York on 3 May 1888, both at £10.10.0. 20 Boussod may have sold their impression to Pablo de Sarasate y Navascues (1844-1908) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2510114). Wunderlich's impression was sold to a private collector in 1889 for $51.24, and acquired later by Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2510103). 21

An impression in the Royal Collection (Graphic with a link to impression #K2510118) was sold through Wunderlich's (stock nos. a 12038 and 65792); it was eventually bequeathed by William P. Chapman Jr to Cornell University.

20: 'Sweet Shop', GUW #13038; 'Little Sweet Shop', #13051.

21: Wunderlich stockbooks, no. 'a15255', 1888.