A portrait of Maud probably dates from 1886. 1
The artist Walter Richard Sickert (1860-1942), who was working closely with Whistler in the 1880s, particularly between 1884 and 1887, wrote that he had seen Whistler at work on several portraits of 'Maud'. 2
The portraits of Maud Franklin (1857-ca 1941) seen by Sickert were probably Portrait of Maud Franklin [YMSM 353], Harmony in Black, No. 10 [YMSM 357], and the painting under discussion, Maud [YMSM 358]. None of these have been located.
Around 1886 Whistler recorded two portraits of Maud as potentially available for exhibition: 'Maud - fur jacket' and 'Maud - green scarf.' 3 The first of these was Arrangement in Black and Brown: The Fur Jacket [YMSM 181], and the other was presumably likewise a life-size full-length portrait and possibly the painting under discussion here, Maud [YMSM 358].
Maud and Whistler parted in 1888 when he married Beatrice Philip (Mrs E. W. Godwin, Mrs J. McN. Whistler) (1857-1896), so after that date Maud could not have posed to Whistler.
2: Sickert, Walter R., 'Where Paul and I differ', Art News, No. 14, 10 February 1910, p. 113.
3: Whistler, list, [1886/1887], formerly dated [4/11 January 1892], GUW #06795. A reference to 'Mrs Godwin' in the list confirms a date before his marriage in 1888. The list was not, as originally thought, intended for D. C. Thomson.
Last updated: 3rd January 2021 by Margaret