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Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 83
Date: 1861
Medium: etching and drypoint
Size: 120 x 166 mm
Signed: 'Whistler - ' at lower right (1-3); partly removed (4-final)
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: Junior Etching Club, 1862
No. of States: 6
Known impressions: 35
Catalogues: K.86; M.87; T.86; W.69
Impressions taken from this plate  (35)
Whistler was elected to the Junior Etching Club in 1859, and attended a meeting on 2 January 1861, when he agreed to contribute two plates 'to replace those promised by the late Mr Luard in the Collection of Miscellaneous Etchings to be published by Day and Son.' 1

Whistler was seriously ill in the summer of 1861, but had recovered by August, when he went to join Ignace-Henri-Jean-Théodore Fantin-Latour (1836-1904), at Sunbury, the house of Edwin Edwards (1823-1879) on the upper reaches of the river Thames.

1: 'Minutes of the Junior Etching Club,' Victoria and Albert Museum; Lochnan 1984[more], p. 134.

Sketching was probably etched in the late summer of 1861, when grasses were seeding on the river banks, and the trees still in full leaf.
Other etchings that may date from this time are The Punt 082 and Landscape with Fisherman 085. 2

The Punt 082 and Sketching 083 were both printed on 1 December 1861, and published in Passages from Modern English Poets, London, 1862 (Plates 7 and 45).

2: Lochnan 1984[more], p. 134.