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Back to Whistler’s Thames
Longshoremen, by James Whistler.Longshoremen, by James Whistler.
Longshoremen, by James Whistler.

© National Maritime Museum, London

Repro ID: PU8035
Title: Longshoremen, by James Whistler.
Description: Longshoremen were labourers employed on the wharves loading and unloading vessels. Born in Massachusetts, Whistler was not strictly a marine painter, but he did produce many views of the Thames. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Whistler chose to depict the urban landscape which was generally thought too vulgar for fine art. Whistler learnt to etch while he was working as a mapmaker in the U.S. Navy. He was President of the Royal Society of British Artists and is respected as one of the greatest etchers to date, combining new ideas with old traditions. He exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1859 to 1879. This print belongs to the set of prints, 'A Series of Sixteen Etchings on the Thames', produced by Whistler and published in 1871. He etched the plates for these prints after he moved to Wapping in 1859. He worked directly with his subjects and by doing so, succeeded in highlighting the existence of a working-class maritime community in the city of London.
Creator: James Abbott McNeill Whistler
Date: 1859
Credit line: National Maritime Museum, London


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