1. Glazer, Jacobson, McCarthy, Roeder, wall label, 2019:
An artist's studio in the late nineteenth century was regarded as a sanctuary of creativity and mystery. Whistler played on the appeal of the studio by welcoming patrons and collectors into his work space and providing a tantalizing peek behind the scenes. In Milly Finch, a model wearing a lavender dress poses provocatively on a red chaise lounge. In Note in Pink and Purple, Milly sits demurely with her hand in her lap. The identical dress, chaise, table, and drapery swag are present in both works, yet the mood is quite different. This illustrates how Whistler used his studio, with its theatrical trappings and bohemian intrigue, much like a performance space.
2. Kenneth Myers, 2004
One of Whistler's most erotic watercolors, Milly Finch evokes Goya's famous paintings of the Naked Maja and the Clothed Maja (both in the Prado). Silhouetted against the vibrant red of the sofa, the model provocatively twists her body, emphasizing the narrowness of her waist and the thrust of her hips. But as in Goya's paintings, the model's head seems detached from her body, and her glazed stare holds the viewer at a distance.