Greaves was from a family of Thames boat-builders, and his father had rowed Turner on the river. Greaves met Whistler in 1863 and they became close friends: Whistler frequently made use of Greaves's boats to paint his famous nocturnes, and Greaves assisted in Whistler's studio. Greaves painted many pictures of his own in the manner of his hero, had exhibitions of them, and is represented in the Tate Gallery. The waters are muddied by claims that Greaves helped Whistler more than is known, or that Whistler learned from Greaves, even that Whistler helped with some of Greaves's pictures. Greaves's nocturnes are entirely his own, however, with a boatman's understanding of the river in all its moods and lights, lyrically rendered. — The Maas Gallery



The Fine Art Society Story. Part I. London: The Fine Art Society, 2001.

The Maas Gallery [Exhibition Catalogue]. London: Maas Gallery, 2010. No. 14.

Weintraub, Stanley. Whistler: A Biography. New York: Weybright and Taslley, 1994.

Last modified 29 January 2012