Artist: James McNeill Whistler (American, Lowell, Massachusetts 1834–1903 London)
Date: ca. 1876–77
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 85 3/4 x 43 1/8 in. (217.8 x 109.5 cm)
Credit Line: Gift of George A. Hearn, 1911
Accession Number: 11.32
Constance Macdonald Gilchrist (1865-1946), popularly known as "the original Gaiety Girl," had a successful career on the London stage in light comedy and vaudeville. Whistler posed her in his studio as she appeared on the stage of the Gaiety Theatre in the skipping-rope dance. In addition to being a portrtait of the popular young dancer, the painting is an experiment in design and color, presenting a visual dialogue between solid forms and flat, decorative patterns.