En Plein Soleil (In the Sunlight)


An etching from 1881. This impression is pencil signed in the lower left, with the artist's red stamp in the lower right. It is plate signed in the lower left as well. Plate measures 7 7/8 x 11 3/4 inches on 10 x 14 inch watermarked laid paper. Catalog: Beraldi 45. Edition of 100. This etching has a rich drypoint burr and a wide tonal range. A plate from the album A Portfolio of Autograph Etchings, published by James R. Osgood and Company, Boston, 1881; printed by Goulding, London, 1881. The scene depicted is likely of Tissot's garden in St. John's Wood, London. The woman on the right is the artist's companion, Kathleen Newton, at left; her children, Cecil George Newton and Muriel Mary Violet Newton, and two unidentified figures. Tissot attended the Ecole des Beaux Arts along with James McNeill Whistler and Degas. He relocated to London after fighting in the Franco-Prussian war and in 1864 exhibited his oil paintings at the Royal Academy. He quickly became well known for his portraits of high-society women but retreated to a life of domesticity with his mistress Kathleen, whom he loved dearly. He never fully recovered from her death in 1882 and returned to Paris afterwards with a newfound interest in religion and spirituality.