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Café Corazza, Paris

Impression: Hunterian Art Gallery
Hunterian Art Gallery
Number: 484
Date: 1897
Medium: etching
Size: 133 x 221 mm
Signed: no
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 1
Known impressions: 4
Catalogues: K.436; M.432
Impressions taken from this plate  (4)
Etching: PK436_01
On the verso, the copper plate bears the oval stamp of 'C. SERVANT / PLANEUR / 45, B DES GDS AUGUSTINS'. Servant provided ten of Whistler's late copper plates, including Boulevard Poissonière, Paris 483, Polichinelle, Jardin du Luxembourg 467, Antony's Print Shop, Rue de Seine 477, Café Corazza, Paris 484 and Mme Pelletier, Blanchisserie, Paris 481, all of which were printed in very small editions, and The Band, Luxembourg Gardens 466, Under the Statue, Luxembourg Gardens 464, Confections pour Dames 475, Sleeping Child, Ajaccio 488 and Flaming Forge 490, which were not printed at all in Whistler's life-time - or at least, no proofs have survived.
The Luxembourg copper plates, although derived from the same maker, are of various sizes. There are three groups. Under the Statue, Luxembourg Gardens (162 x 124mm) is close in size to Polichinelle, Jardin du Luxembourg (122 x 161mm). The Band, Luxembourg Gardens (181 x 152mm) is close to another Paris subject, Blanchisserie (182 x 151mm). Antony's Print Shop, Rue de Seine (152 x 192mm) is similar to Sleeping Child, Ajaccio (153 x 190mm) and Flaming Forge (192 x 154mm). This leaves three copper plates of unique sizes, probably all Paris subjects, Café Corazza, Paris (133 x 221mm), close, but not exactly the same size as French houses (225 x 130mm), and finally Boulevard Poissonière, Paris (159 x 232mm).
The Paris copper plates may have remained in Whistler's Paris studio after he left. Eventually, in 1901, they were sorted, cleaned and stored by Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958), according to strict instructions from the artist:
'In Paris you have some, have you not, in your closets? - and at the atelier I have scarcely ventured to look on the shelves for a long time back! - Make some kind of a note of them - and lock them up - '. 10
The copper plate remained in Whistler's possession until his death, and was bequeathed to Miss Birnie Philip, who gave it to the University of Glasgow in 1935. It was cancelled posthumously with a diagonal line across the lower left corner.