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Grischka Petri: Arrangement in Business. The Art Markets and the Career of James McNeill Whistler

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Ever since John Ruskin dismissed James McNeill Whistler (1834–1903) as a coxcomb asking exaggerated prices for bad paintings, the American artist has been labeled an entrepreneurial self-promoter. For the first time, this study examines in detail the economic side of Whistler’s entire career. The artist’s professional trajectories are traced with the help of a database recording prices for his works between 1855 and 1903, making the structure of his international lifetime markets transparent. The book analyses Whistler’s exhibition strategies in London, Paris and New York, and the artist’s relationships with patrons and institutions. Whistler’s transactions with art dealers, commercial galleries and collectors are examined, and business aspects of his artistic decisions are discussed together with commercial implications of the Aesthetic Movement. Whistler emerges as a first modernist successfully making up strategies of distinction. A complement to the existing Whistler catalogues raisonnés and biographies focusing on the aspect of art economy, this study is a valuable reference work.

Die Veröffetnlichung wurde 2011 vom Olms Verlag herausgegeben.

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