[ Sir Laurence Whistler. ] Three Autograph Letters Signed and an Autograph Card Signed to Rachel Campbell, with an ALS from his son Simon Whistler, two catalogues and two postcards, mostly concerning his brother Rex Whistler.

Sir Laurence Whistler (1912-2000), glass engraver, author and architectural historian [ Rex Whistler (1905-1944), artist ]
Publication details: 
Whistler's four items between 1986 and 1996. From: Scriber's Cottage, High Street, Oxford; The Old Manor, Alton Barnes, Marlborough, Wiltshire. The first of the two catalogues circa 1985; the second, Sotheby's, 1992.
SKU: 19616

Nine items in good condition, lightly aged and worn. ONE: LW to RC. ALS. 15 January 1986. On letterhead of The Old Manor. 2pp., 8vo. He has been 'touched and made so happy' by her 'rewarding letter about my brother and his work'. The first part of the letter concerns his brother Rex's reputation; the second the family's artistic antecedents. He explains that he 'did get the V. & A. to hold a one-man exhibition of his work in about 1954', and that he has been 'trying in the last ten years and more to arrange another – at the R.A. Or the Tate or Hayward – but without success. The Tate agreed, and then withdrew. The critical climate still prevails in which he is seen as a pasticheur. If it alters enough in my lifetime I might succeed. But, without this, he has a great many followers who are not so much affected by fashion, especially among the young; which I like.' In the second part of the letter he discusses the family's 'genes and inheritance', beginning: 'In our case, Paul Storr seems a long way back, though one attempts to reach out for a fingertip. But in between there is some heavy insulation provided by the Cloth and the Services.' He discusses the efforts of members of his immediate family ('My sister drew a bit […]') and her 'own botanical painting'. The letter ends: 'There is nothing like drawing & painting something carefully to make one see and value what is so easily accepted as seen when really it isn't.' TWO: LW to RC. ALS. 4 July 1986. On Old Manor letterhead. 2pp., 12mo. With envelope addressed by LW to 'Mrs Campbell | Springfield | Celbridge | Co Kildare'. The letter concerns LC's memorial to his brother, an engraved prism which revolves in Salisbury Cathedral. He writes that it is 'kind and generous' of her 'to want to contribute to the memorial! It is making good progress, but is a lengthy job what with metal-worker, bronze-founder, glass-bender, stone-carver, gilder, not to mention the engravers, all to be coordinated by the last-named.' He is sending her 'cards of two panels, about 2 ft high, already in one Cathedral'. THREE: LW to RC. ACS. 10 September 1994. With label of Windmill Farm House, High Street, Watlington, Oxford. He has found her letter 'warming', and is pleased by all she says, 'especially by your recognition of those late landscapes. I think that, at last, he is beginning to be recognised as a serious artist, & I am planning a “retrospective” (probably shan't see it!)'. FOUR: LW to RC. Mm/ LW to RC. ALS. 22 May 1996. On Scriber's Cottage letterhead. In envelope addressed to 'Ms Rachel Campbell | 17 Northampton St | Bath'. Begins: 'Yes I did sell the “Dick Turpin” drawing, it wasn't pinched.' He ends by discussnig his plans 'to get an R W Retrospective Exbn at the Tate c 1905 [sic] Posthumous to me, too. But I might plan it.' FIVE: Simon Whistler to RC. ALS. 1 January [2001?]. Label with the Marlborough address of 'M. & S. Whistler'. 'Your interest in our family seems considerable and is flattering to know about. We have a representative volume of his work to which I hope to add whenever I can.' He ends with a reference to a 1994 Rex Whistler exhibition in London. SIX and SEVEN: The two postcards referred to in Item Two above. Illustrating quotations from T. S. Eliot's 'Four Quartets'. Not filled in. EIGHT: Pamphlet titled 'St. Nicholas, Moreton | The Engraved Glass Windows'. 28pp., 8vo. Stapled. On shiny art paper. Twenty-four full-page illustrations. NINE: 'Laurence Whistler C.B.E. | An Exhibition for his 80th Birthday'. London: Sotheby's, 1992. 56pp., 4to. Stapled into card wraps. On shiny art paper. Fifty-six illustrations. Also present is a cutting of Whistler's Daily Telegraph obituary.