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Picturing a World

Whistler's Cloud cabinet

To prepare for my September 27th talk on Where the Light Falls and Prevention’s list of 55 Happy Books Proven to Boost Your Mood, I reread my novel and found myself wondering what images might be available now that were not when I was researching. Well, this one is splendid! I had used written descriptions of the yellow-and-gold room that Whistler designed for the Paris World’s Fair of 1878, the room that makes Jeanette long to move from drawing to painting, the room that inspires Cousin Effie to cut free from New York decorum in thinking about interior fashions. But the closest I could find to images of that room were pictures of Whistler’s Peacock Room. The Cloud Cabinet, however, may actually have been in the very exhibit my characters visit. I’ll certainly see it every time I revisit that scene from now on, and I hope some new readers have happened on this blog post in time to aid their own visualizations.

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