The Canal, Ostend

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 352
Date: 1887
Medium: etching
Size: 67 x 179 mm
Signed: butterfly at lower left
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 1
Known impressions: 4
Catalogues: K.353; M.350; W.248
Impressions taken from this plate  (4)


The Canal, Ostend was not published.


An impression was shown in New York by Whistler's main American print dealers, H. Wunderlich & Co., in 1898 (possibly Graphic with a link to impression #K3530103). 12 An impression was lent by Bryan Lathrop (1844-1916) to the exhibition organised by the Caxton Club in Chicago in 1900 (Graphic with a link to impression #K3530105). 13

After Whistler's death, impressions were also shown at the Grolier Club in New York in 1904, as well as in the Whistler Memorial Exhibition in London in 1905. 14 It is not clear if these were different impressions or permutations of the two known impressions.

12: New York 1898 (cat. no. 274); see REFERENCES: EXHIBITIONS.

13: Chicago 1900 (cat. no. 214).

14: New York 1904a (cat. no. 266); London Mem. 1905 (cat. no. 248).


This etching is extremely rare. Only one sale by Whistler is recorded, on 17 November 1887 to the London print-dealer, Thomas M. McLean (b. ca 1832), for £4.4.0. 15

15: GUW #13016.

One impression is unusual in having belonged to Bryan Lathrop (1844-1916) (most of whose collection went to the Art Institute of Chicago), as well as by Howard Mansfield (1849-1938) and Harris G. Whittemore (d. ca 1937), before being acquired by the Library of Congress (Graphic with a link to impression #K3530105). The only other lifetime impression was owned by Henry Harper Benedict (1844-1935), possibly acquired through H. Wunderlich & Co., New York (account number 'a 33626'), and was later bought by Lessing Julius Rosenwald (1891-1971), who gave it to the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, 1943 (Graphic with a link to impression #K3530103).