Cutler Street, Houndsditch

Impression: Art Institute of Chicago
Art Institute of Chicago
Number: 361
Date: 1887
Medium: etching
Size: 178 x 128 mm
Signed: butterfly at right
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 2
Known impressions: 8
Catalogues: K.292; M.287; W.234
Impressions taken from this plate  (8)


It was not published. However, it forms one of Whistler's unpublished but clearly defined 'Houndsditch Set'.


It was first shown at a print dealer's show, by H. Wunderlich & Co. in New York, as 'Cutler Street, Houndsditch' in 1898, and by F. Keppel & Co. in the following year. Then an impression was lent as 'Cutler's Street' by Howard Mansfield (1849-1938) to the exhibition organised by the Caxton Club in Chicago in 1900 (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920205). 19 Another was exhibited at Obach & Co. in London in 1903 and bought by Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919) (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920102). 20

After Whistler's death, an impression was shown in the comprehensive Grolier Club exhibition in New York in 1904, and Henry Studdy Theobald (1847-1934) lent one to the Whistler Memorial show in London in 1905. 21

19: Chicago 1900 (cat. no. 204); see REFERENCES: EXHIBITIONS.

20: London Obach 1903 (cat. no. 195).

21: New York 1904a (cat. no. 247); London Mem. 1905 (cat. no. 234).


There was a limited print-run. The first sales recorded were by Whistler, who sold three to the London print dealer Thomas M. McLean (b. ca 1832), on 17 November 1887, and offered one to Craibe Angus & Son of Glasgow, on 16 December, all at £10.10.0. 22 It is possible that Craibe Angus sold one - a first state - to Bernard Buchanan MacGeorge (1845?-1924). It was later bought from the collection of Harry Brisbane Dick (1855-1916) for the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920103).

In 1888 Whistler sold several to print dealers - two or three to Messrs Dowdeswell's, and one each to Wunderlich's and Knoedler's - for the same price. 23 The Wunderlich's invoice lists 'Cutler Street - Houndsditch' as number 9 of 41 sold, and that number is written on the verso of an impression bought by Howard Mansfield (1849-1938), and later acquired by the Library of Congress (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920205).

22: GUW #13016, #01959.

23: Dowdeswell, [1887], #08678, and #08679, [January/June 1888?], #11119, 1 February 1888, #00900, 10 February 1888, #13027; Knoedler's, 27 July 1888 (23 of 24 sold), #13660; Wunderlich's, 14 May 1888, #13659.

Later, in 1899, Whistler sold another to Wunderlich's of New York for only £8.8.0, possibly a discount on a big sale. 24 It may have been the impression marked with Wunderlich's stock number (a 50069) and now in Colby College, Maine (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920206).

At Sotheby's, where an impression - a second state - from the collection of the late Joshua Hutchinson Hutchinson (ca 1829 - d.1891) was sold on 3 March 1892 (lot 316), it fetched far less, being bought for £4.10.0 by the London print dealer Robert Dunthorne (b. ca 1851). This was acquired by Clarence Buckingham (1855-1913) and given by his sisters to the Art Institute of Chicago (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920202).

George Washington Vanderbilt (1862-1914), acquired an impression, possibly direct from Whistler (Graphic with a link to impression #K2920z01), and Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919), bought one from Obach & Co. in London a few days before Whistler's death in 1903 (Graphic with a link to impression #K1920102).

24: 24 March 1899, GUW #07305.