University of Glasgow

University of Glasgow

The unrivalled holdings of the University of Glasgow are founded on the major gifts and bequest of Whistler’s sister-in-law and heir, Rosalind Birnie Philip. These outstanding resources, housed in the Hunterian Art Gallery and the University of Glasgow Library, have provided the basis for internationally-recognised exhibitions, displays, research, learning and teaching through History of Art.

The Hunterian

The Hunterian’s Whistler Collection comprises over 800 of his artworks, together with 250 works by his wife, Beatrix Whistler, and an extensive holding of the artist’s materials and personal possessions. The artworks include: 80 oil paintings; over 100 pastels; 120 drawings and watercolours; 14 sketchbooks; 150 lithographs and 390 etchings (excluding multiple states and duplicates); and 280 etching plates. The permanent displays comprise the world’s largest showing of his work, and are complemented by regular special exhibits.

History of Art, University of Glasgow

History of Art was founded in 1948 and now forms part of the School of Culture & Creative Arts. It offers both single and combined degrees, taken with a variety of other subjects within the College of Arts. All the major European art historical periods are covered at undergraduate level from Antiquity, the Middle-Ages and Renaissance, to Romanticism, Realism and Modernism. In addition there are specialists in Whistler Studies, Decorative Art and Design of the 19th-20th centuries, Chinese Art, Textile Conservation and Technical Art History. History of Art has a lively postgraduate community with students registered for MPhil, MLitt and PhD degrees in a wide range of subjects both theoretical and applied. Staff and students benefit from The Hunterian’s rich resources and those of the wider city. Whistler forms part of a range of courses including taught MLitt Programmes in Decorative Art and Design History and 19th-century Art, Architecture and Design.

University of Glasgow Library

The largest single collection of Whistler’s correspondence and papers is held in the University of Glasgow. Over a third of the 7000 letters are by Whistler; the remainder is letters he received. An extensive reference library of over 1000 volumes on Whistler includes some 200 books from the artist’s library, a nearly complete collection of Whistler’s publications and exhibition catalogues, thousands of his press cuttings and hundreds of photographs. In addition the Library has reference copies of Whistler letters in other collections, notably those in the Library of Congress, the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, and the New York Public Library.

Banner image detail: Battersea Reach from Lindsey Houses, c.1864-1871, oil on canvas, The Hunterian, University of Glasgow, GLAHA 46358.