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Purple and Rose: The Lange Leizen of the Six Marks

James Abbott McNeill Whistler, American (active England), 1834 - 1903
Lange Leizen, which is the Dutch term for "Long Ladies," is the name applied to blue-and-white Chinese porcelain decorated with images of slender women. Whistler's interest in East Asian art can be seen here in the accessories surrounding the model, many of which are based on his own art collection....

Object Details
Purchased from the artist by James Leathart (1820–1895), Newcastle, 1864 [1]; sold to John G. Johnson (1841–1917), Philadelphia, through Goupil Gallery, London, April 1893 [2]; bequest to the City of Philadelphia, 1917.1. There were rumors, probably perpetuated by Whistler, that he sold the work to Paris dealer Ernest Gambart (1814–1902) for 100 pounds. In fact, Whistler later reported that he quietly sold the painting to Leathart for 80 pounds. See Linda Merrill, “Whistler and the ‘Lange Lijzen,’” Burlington Magazine, vol. 136 (October 1994), pp. 686–87.2. The painting stayed with Goupil from the 1892 exhibition (Nocturnes, Marines and Chevalet Pieces, March–April 1892) until its sale to Johnson. David Croal Thomson (1855–1930) at Goupil wrote to Whistler on April 12, 1893, that they had negotiated the sale with Johnson and “arranged the matter with the Newcastle owner” (Glasgow University Library, MS Whistler T117). Leathart was ill in 1892 and irritated that the gallery charged him for cleaning the painting prior to its exhibition.

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