There are considerable variations in the titles that have been suggested:
The Golden Lily (Green and Gold: The Little Green Cap)' is the revised title, based on Whistler's original title as published in 1901, with the title given to it by the purchaser in 1902.
A half-length portrait of a girl in vertical format. She is in three-quarter view to right, her head slightly tilted to left (her right), but looking at the viewer. She has dark red hair, shoulder-length, cut in a deep fringe. Her dress is black.
In 1901 the sitter was described in newspapers as 'wan', 'a young girl, red-haired and vivacious', 'strong in character', and having 'red-gold hair.' 8
In 1901 Whistler mentioned her as 'The Golden Lillie' and asked his dentist to cure her:
'I depend upon this pretty child - little Lillie Pamington - "The Golden Lillie" - for the making of my pictures - and I send her to you in great suffering not only that her pain may be stopped at once by your magic! but especially that her mouth may not be put out of drawing & ruined for me by some "Native" to whom she would otherwise run in her agony!' 9
2: 3rd Exhibition, Pictures, Drawings, Prints and Sculptures, International Society of Sculptors, Painters and Gravers, Galleries of the Royal Institute, London, 1901 (cat. no. 35).
4: The Inaugural Loan Collection of Paintings, Buffalo Fine Arts Academy, Buffalo, 1905 (cat. no. 169).
5: R. Birnie Philip to Freer, 8 October 1907, GUL.
6: 4th Annual Exhibition of Selected Paintings by American Artists, Buffalo Fine Arts Academy, Buffalo, 1909 (cat. no. 186).
8: Hearth and Home, 17 October 1901; Daily News, London, 12 October 1901; Star, London, 8 October 1901; Daily Telegraph, London, 9 October 1901; Chronicle, London, 5 October 1901. ISSPG press cuttings, National Art Library, Victoria and Albert Museum, 1901 album.
Last updated: 21st November 2020 by Margaret