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The Fur Tippet: Miss Lenoir

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 365
Date: 1887
Medium: etching and drypoint
Size: 100 x 69 mm
Signed: butterfly at left
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 1
Known impressions: 6
Catalogues: K.334; M.330
Impressions taken from this plate  (6)


clothing, dress, fashion, fur, portrait, woman, woman seated.


Variations on the title are as follows:

'Fur tippet' (1888, Whistler). 4
'Fur Tippet Miss Lenoir' (1890/1891, Whistler). 5
'Woman Seated' (1899, Frederick Wedmore (1844-1921)). 6
'Miss Lenoir' (1902, Edward Guthrie Kennedy (1849-1932)). 7

'The Fur Tippet: Miss Lenoir' is based on the titles used by Whistler and those preferred by later cataloguers.

4: Whistler to T. M. McLean, [11 February 1888], GUW #13018.

5: List, [1890/1891], GUW #13236.

6: Wedmore 1899[more] (cat. no. 222).

7: Kennedy 1902[more] (cat. no. 309).


A three-quarter length portrait of a seated woman who sits turned a little to the left, but twisting to look slightly to the right. She wears a dark coat, a fur tippet and a hat with a sharply tilted brim, decorated with a tall arrangement of feathers and possibly ribbons.


Helen Lenoir (1852-1913). Whistler was in frequent contact with Miss Lenoir, partly because she was business manager for Richard D'Oyly Carte (1844-1901). Whistler was in discussion with them concerning his own paintings, about plans for a lecture tour, and about the decoration of the Savoy Hotel, which was then under construction, and where he etched Savoy Scaffolding 317.


Wedmore described it as 'A slight etching of a woman seated - three-quarters length - dressed for walking. About the period of 'The Muff,' but less desirable.' 8 The Muff 131 is a good comparison (though not necessarily more 'desirable'!), showing a lady with a fur trimmed jacket. Their titles emphasize the importance of the dress and hat, fashionable items which are equally prominent in several other prints including A Lady wearing a hat with a feather 118, The Little Hat 366 and The Busby 368 and (in a different way) The Bonnet-Shop 254. A fur tippet or collar appeared in late states of Maud, Standing 169, and fur is also the subject of The Fur Cloak - Mrs Herbert 367.

8: Wedmore 1899[more] (cat. no. 222).