Monday, August 20, 2012

Beatrix Potter's journal, James Abbott McNeill Whistler and marketing-

                                                              Harmony in Grey and Green-via 

Even though it was all written in code, there is nothing very personal in her writings, but there are all
sort of interesting tit bits about life, politics, and art in London during the time.
She writes about James McNeill Whistler:
"Mr Whistler is holding an Exhibition somewhere, termed an Arrangement in white and yellow.The furniture is painted yellow and the footman is dressed in white and yellow, someone said he looked like a poached egg. Mr.Whistler sent the Princess of Wales and the fine ladies yellow butterflies which they wore at the private view. What a set of yellow butterflies! It's quite disgusting how people go on about these Pre-Raphaelite aesthetic painters." 

My girl Beatrix had a mind of her own and strong opinions. When she wrote this she was seventeen.
But anyway, it got me interested in Whistler's concept, and I found out that the butterfly was a very common theme in his work, you can spot a couple of them in the painting above, and he used a butterfly for his signature, which you can also spot in the same painting .(branding-logo?) The second image is a drawing of what a yellow canopy he designed for an exhibition would have looked like.
 It makes me want to have an exhibition in blue, sap green and white, with swans and ducks, and a pond of some sort in the middle. I will have trouble finding a footman though (especially one willing to look like a poached swan)... Anyway, jokes aside, I really find Whistler's overall concept, and branding-marketing techniques quite fascinating. Sometimes we (or I at least) think the art world discovered marketing and branding only yesterday but obviously it didn't!  More info here, and here. 



Lari Washburn said...

Hahaha! We think we are so smart don't we?! I had read something in the New Yorker about Whistler, and I recall that it was in the vein of his not being a very good draftsman, or something like that. But I think this gets back to the marketing. He must have been good at it as you say. I was looking at a book about Monet's garden the other day, and the same thought occurred to, he must have really been a good promoter of himself and his art because he certainly had a plushy setup in Giverny! and now I will have to look up Miss Potter's journal.

annamaria potamiti said...

I am very glad you got excited by this Lari. I have learnt quite a few interesting 'this and that' from Beatrix these days. She had a very observant eye.Thank you for coming by;)

Katie Frank said...

Wow first paiting is really good.

Amanda said...

Great Post. I love Art.
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