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Query builder

Cottage Door

Accession Number
1954/1.395

Title
Cottage Door

Artist(s)
James Abbott McNeill Whistler

Artist Nationality
American (North American)

Object Creation Date
1886

Medium & Support
etching and drypoint, printed in dark brown ink on laid paper, trimmed to platemark

Dimensions
2 5/8 in. x 3 7/8 in. ( 6.7 cm x 9.9 cm )

Credit Line
Bequest of Margaret Watson Parker

Label copy
Cottage Door
circa 1884–86
Etching
Second state of two (Kennedy 250)
Bequest of Margaret Watson Parker, 1954/1.395
In this scene of children in the doorway of a cottage, the recurring motif of figures in a darkened doorway is infused with an intimacy of subject and scale; the image has all the verve of a quickly captured sketch. The small size of the plate and the near view are complemented by the shapes of the doorway, street, and window: the loosely drawn girls lounging at the threshold contrast with the rectangular structures, which bring the viewer into a close encounter with the figures.

Subject matter
During the 1880s, Whistler focused on depicting street-scapes, both views of shop fronts and facades and works, such as this, which seem to capture a smaller fragment of that larger subject. Often, Whistler filled the image with architecture, eliminating the sky and building the composition on the visual structure provided by windows and doorways. Here three girls lounge before a darkened open doorway. This site has been indentified by the Glasgow catalogue raisonné as being in Cumberland in north-west England that Whistler visited in August of 1886.

Physical Description
Four girls stand in, adjacent to, or in front of a dark open doorway. The doorway is cropped at the top, focusing on the figures. To the right is the partial view of a window.

Primary Object Classification
Print

Primary Object Type
intaglio print

Collection Area
Western

Rights
If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form.

Keywords
buildings
children (people by age group)
cottages
doorways
girls
standing
window
windows

& Author Notes

All Rights Reserved