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Under Old Battersea Bridge

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 168
Date: 1876/1878
Medium: etching, drypoint and open bite
Size: 216 x 139 mm
Signed: no
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: 'Cancelled Plates', 1879
No. of States: 3
Known impressions: 24
Catalogues: K.176; M.173
Impressions taken from this plate  (24)
Etching: PK176_01
Recto, above; verso, below:
Etching: PK176_02
The copper plate has no maker's stamp, but it is very close in size to a number of etchings, including Soupe trois sous 064, Bibi Valentin 034 and Under Old Battersea Bridge 168, dating from 1859-1861, and Sleeping Girl 127, Steamboat Fleet, Chelsea 155, Nude Reclining 126, The Desk 129 and Wych Street, London 176, from the mid-late 1870s. Most of these were bought from Hughes & Kimber in London. It is a size that Whistler favoured both for vertical and horizontal compositions.
It was probably among those plates cancelled at the time of Whistler's bankruptcy in 1879. It was cancelled with numerous diagonal and crossed lines on the upper two thirds of the plate. The cancelled copper plate was probably among plates bought at Whistler's bankruptcy sale by the Fine Art Society, London. It was published in an album of Cancelled Plates ('Cancelled Set') by The Fine Art Society, London, 1879.
The copper plate was probably among those acquired from Robert Dunthorne (b. ca 1851), in exchange for lithographs, by Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958). 8 The plate was given by Miss Philip to the University of Glasgow in 1935.

8: Note by R. Birnie Philip, inserted in the album, Hunterian Art Gallery.