Richly inked impression from the cancelled plate.
Fumette’s Bent Head dates from the end of Whistler’s first intense period of etching, 1858-59, during which time he had published his first group of etchings. Whistler had lived with the model for this etching, a milliner whose real name was Eloise, during his time in Rue St. Sulpice in Paris. Its title, Fumette’s Bent Head, is derived from a nickname, and through her notoriously fiery temperament – she is known to have torn up a number of Whistler’s drawings in one of her more tempestuous moments.
There are the remains of a faint secondary portrait at the lower right of this image which some have suggested was a self portrait of Whistler himself.
On cream laid paper with fleur-de-lys watermark, with full margins. Two small repairs in outer margin of sheet, otherwise very fine condition.