• Green and Silver–Beaulieu, Touraine
  • Green and Silver–Beaulieu, Touraine

Green and Silver–Beaulieu, Touraine

A green meadow, with a house and trees in the distance; a child stands in the foreground, with another figure beyond. Signed with the butterfly at lower left.
Maker nationality and date
Watercolor on fabric mounted on board
H x W: 12.9 × 21.6 cm (5 1/16 × 8 1/2 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Object Number
Production location
France, Touraine, Beaulieu-lès-Loches
Red butterfly in lower left corner
Verso: 'Green & Silver' / Beaulieu, Touraine
Exhibition History
Copley Society of Art, Oil Paintings, Water Colors, Pastels and Drawings: Memorial Exhibition of the Works of Mr. J. McNeill Whistler, February 23 to March 22, 1904
City and County of San Francisco, Panama-Pacific International Exposition, February 20 to December 4, 1915
Selected Curatorial Remarks
1. Glazer, Jacobson, McCarthy, Roeder, wall label, 2019:
In 1888 Whistler abandoned his mistress Maud Franklin and married Beatrice Godwin, the widow of his friend, architect E. W. Godwin. The couple honeymooned in France, where the artist purchased fabric-covered boards that bear the stamp of art supplier E. Mary et Fils in Paris. While the boards were likely constructed for oil painting, Whistler experimented by using them for watercolor. He painted this landscape, and at least four others on boards, while the newlyweds toured the Loire Valley.
Selected Published References
1. Curry: James McNeill Whistler at the Freer Gallery of Art, Pg. 195
During the summer of 1888 Whistler spent time in the Touraine region of the Loire Valley, making a number of etchings which depict both genre scenes and tourist attractions. Just south of Tours, Beaulieu-les-Loches is on the right bank of the Indre River, only about a mile from Loches, where many of the etchings were made. Whistler painted what appears to be a country house in the vicinity. The child in the foreground is echoed by a tiny figure behind him, making a formal transition from the vast green meadow to the house in the distance. The composition began with dark clouds which were scraped away before Whistler painted the pinkish-gray sky. The use of a canvas support for a watercolor is unusual in Whistler's work.
Catalogue Raisonne number
MacDonald Catalogue number
Previous owner(s)
Goupil et Cie (C.L. Freer source) (1829-1919)
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919)
SI Usage Statement

Usage conditions apply

There are restrictions for re-using this image. For more information, visit the Smithsonian's Terms of Use page.

The information presented on this website may be revised and updated at any time as ongoing research progresses or as otherwise warranted. Pending any such revisions and updates, information on this site may be incomplete or inaccurate or may contain typographical errors. Neither the Smithsonian nor its regents, officers, employees, or agents make any representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the information on the site. Use this site and the information provided on it subject to your own judgment. The National Museum of Asian Art welcomes information that would augment or clarify the ownership history of objects in their collections..

Back to Top