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‘If I Could Only Draw Like That’

P.N. Furbank, 24 November 1994

The Gentle Art of Making Enemies 
by James McNeill Whistler.
Heinemann, 338 pp., £20, October 1994, 0 434 20166 9
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James McNeill Whistler: Beyond the Myth 
by Ronald Anderson and Anne Koval.
Murray, 544 pp., £25, October 1994, 0 7195 5027 0
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... will always be room for a further Life. The present one, by the art historians Ronald Anderson and Anne Koval, makes large claims. Whistler, say the authors, fabricated innumerable fictions about his own life, which he then began to believe himself, and his biographers (with the single exception of James Laver) have been gullible enough to go along with ...

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