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The Camp

Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 80
Date: 1861
Medium: drypoint
Size: 288 x 159 mm
Signed: 'Whistler.' at lower left
Inscribed: '1861.' at lower left
Set/Publication: 'Cancelled Plates', 1879
No. of States: 1
Known impressions: 20
Catalogues: K.82; M.82; T.68; W.75
Impressions taken from this plate  (20)


An unfinished, cancelled and then partially restored drypoint.


There is only one impression of the first state, printed in black ink on chine collé ().
Another early impression, also unique, has criss-crossing diagonal scratches, plus the marks of burnishing where the artist apparently tried to remove these marks. This impression, in black ink on ivory laid paper, printed with a strong burr; it was signed by Whistler for Samuel Putnam Avery (1822-1904) in the 1870s (). When Whistler sold an impression to Charles Augustus Howell (1840?-1890), also in the late 1870s, he described it as 'Encampment - (scratched)' . 15 The term 'scratched' rather than 'cancelled' is unusual, and suggests that he was down-playing scratches, which implied that he had cancelled the etching. Indeed, it may be that he had cancelled it, and then regretted it.

15: 14-16 November [1877], GUW #13668.

It was published in an album of Cancelled Plates ('Cancelled Set') by The Fine Art Society, London, 1879. This may have been an edition of about 20. One example is printed in black ink on 'modern' (post-1800) laid paper with a partial horned crown watermark (). There is still quite a rich burr on some of these impressions (, ).