Title search terms: venus
|Medium:||etching and drypoint|
|Size:||153 x 230 mm|
|Signed:||'Whistler.' at lower left|
|Inscribed:||'1859.' at lower left|
|No. of States:||2|
|Catalogues:||K.59; M.59; T.27; W.56|
|Impressions taken from this plate (27)|
' Venus ' (1872, British Museum). 1
'Female Figure' (1874, Ralph Thomas, Jr (1840-1876)). 2
' Venus ' (1886, Frederick Wedmore (1844-1921)). 3
' Venus ' (1890/1891, Beatrice Whistler (1857-1896)). 4
'A Venus ' (1909, Howard Mansfield (1849-1938)). 5
Either Percy Thomas (1846-1922), who sold an impression to the British Museum in 1872, or the Keeper of the Print Room records, recorded the title as ' Venus ', so it is a little surprising that Ralph Thomas chose a less specific title two years later. However, Wedmore reverted to the classical title, as did Whistler's wife in a studio inventory. It is reasonable to assume that Whistler did not object to it. ' Venus ' is therefore the generally accepted title.
6: London Tate 1994 (cat. no. 4).
Lochnan comments that with 'her ample form and scandalous pose' Venus fits within the Realist tradition, as seen in nudes painted by Gustave Courbet (1819-1877). 8 Another inspiration for this type of realistic female nude may have been Rembrandt's etching Jupiter and Antiope, reproduced below.
Rembrandt Harmens van Rijn (1617-1681),
Jupiter and Antiope, 1659,
etching, burin and drypoint, B.285,
British Museum 1910,0212.368. 9