The Music Room

James McNeill Whistler, 1859

WAG 1579

About this object

Etched while Whistler was visiting Haden’s home in Sloane Street, London, The Music Room shows Haden (left) and his wife Deborah, Whistler’s half sister (right).

Whistler was very close with Haden, acting as groomsman at their wedding in 1847. The man seated centrally in the print is James Reeves Traer, a partner in Haden's medical practice. Haden and Whistler’s friendship came to an abrupt end in 1867 and Whistler accused Haden of disrespecting Traer when the latter died in Paris. Whistler knocked Haden through a plate-glass window and they never spoke again.

Object specifics

  • Artist(s)
    James McNeill Whistler (American, born:1834-07-10, died:1903-07-17)
  • Date
  • Materials
    Etching; Dry point; Ink; Paper
  • Measurements
    plate mark: 14.3 cm x 21.5 cm
  • Physical description
    Interior scene with three figures; a gentleman reading the paper and slouching in his chair at left;, a lady engaged with needle point at right and another gentleman in the centre background sitting behind the table lit with a lamp.
  • Related people
    Deborah Delano Haden (née Whistler) (Sitter) ; Francis Seymour Haden (Sitter) ; Samuel Henry Nazeby Harrington (Previous owner) ; James Reeves Traer (Sitter) ; James McNeill Whistler (Artist/maker)
  • Other number(s)
    WAG Inventory Number: 1579
  • Credit line
    Presented to the Walker Art Gallery by Dr H N Harrington in 1910
  • Location
    Sudley House, First Floor, Special Exhibitions Room
  • Collection
    From the Walker Art Gallery collections


Previous owners

  • Samuel Henry Nazeby Harrington

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1910
    Disposal method: Presented to the Walker Art Gallery


Item inscriptions

  • Inscription text: J. McNeill Whistler. The Music Room (2nd State)
    Inscription method: Pencil
    Inscription note:
    Inscription location: Mount; Below plate
Object view = Fine Art
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