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Z. Astruc, Editor of 'L'Artiste'

Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 36
Date: 1859
Medium: drypoint
Size: 230 x 154 mm
Signed: 'Whistler - ' at lower left
Inscribed: '1859.' at lower left
Set/Publication: 'Cancelled Plates', 1879
No. of States: 3
Known impressions: 21
Catalogues: K.53; M.53; T.66; W.49
Impressions taken from this plate  (21)


Z. Astruc, Editor of 'L'Artiste' is one of a small group of drypoints done in 1859, most of which are portraits, namely Whistler with a hat 044, Fumette's Bent Head 058, Finette 061, C. L. Drouet, Sculptor 035, and Arthur Haden 066.


Few impressions are known before cancellation. There is only one impression of the first state, in which below the portrait - a dramatic impression with strong burr - some small, crudely drawn figures appear at the bottom. Whistler wrote 'figures not mine -' on this impression (). In this and some other impressions an early inscription including the name ''LamonT' and 'Lammont' (with the 'L' reversed) etched on the plate is also visible. This suggests that the plate was originally owned by or worked on by Thomas Reynolds Lamont (1826-1898), when he was a fellow student of Whistler's in Paris in 1857, and that it was burnished and re-used by Whistler in 1859.
There is just one impression of the second state () in black ink on cream laid Japan paper, and three of the third state. All were printed in black ink, with rich burr (i.e. ), on Japan paper. One, for instance, is on cream kozo paper with 'laid' lines, and evenly distributed debris in the paper (), another on thin dark ivory tissue with lots of flecks of debris ().
Impressions from the cancelled plate were printed in black ink on ivory or cream laid paper, sometimes with the watermark 'Van Gelder' in script (, ). There may have been a print-run of about twenty from the cancelled plate.