Kensington Gardens (The Small Plate)


Sir Francis Seymour Haden (1818-1910), Kensington Gardens (The Small Plate), drypoint, 1859, signed in pencil lower right. References: Harrington 12, Schneiderman 15, third/fourth state (of 10). In very good condition, on a thin Japan paper, with margins, 6 1/4 x 4 1/2, the sheet 8 1/4 x 5 3/4 inches, archival mounting (window mat, unattached mylar hinging).

A very fine impression, carefully wiped above the chimneys in the background, with blacks of the trees and shadows in the foreground contrasting effectively with the greys of the mansion to create a marvelous sense of depth.

We believe this is the third state, before the inscription by Whistler (the name Seymour Haden at the bottom) is completely removed, but it may be the fourth state or an intermediate state between the two – the name Kensington appears twice, once at the left and again is visible at the right.

At this time Whistler, Haden’s brother in law, was learning printmaking and working closely with Haden. Haden was a surgeon, but had a long and distinguished career as one of the leading British etchers.