James McNeill Whistler
Person Born 14/7/1834 Died 17/7/1903
Painter and printmaker, born in Worthen Street, Lowell, Massachussetts. His family moved to Russia in 1843 and he received his first formal art instruction at the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts, St Petersburg. Returning to America he learned the technigue of etching as a navy cartographer. After studies in France he settled in London in 1859. Among his prolific works the most famous is probably 'Arrangement in Grey and Black' - better known as 'Whistler's Mother'. A dandy and a wit, when Oscar Wilde said to him, 'I wish I had said that', he is supposed to have replied 'You will Oscar, you will!'. and Oscar would say of Whistler that he always spelt Art with a capital I, and so their friendship changed to animosity over time. Whistler died in London at 74 Cheyne Walk, which he had leased in 1902.