John Gould The Birds of Australia prints

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Presenter:  Dr Andrew Miller

Date: Feb 08, 2017

Time: 3:15pm

Contact person:  CDU Art Gallery
T: 08 8946 6621

Location:  CDU Art Gallery, Orange 12

John Gould The Birds of Australia prints - Public floor talk by Dr Andrew Miller

CDU Art Gallery invites you to attend a public floor-talk by Dr Andrew Miller as he discusses his collection of The Birds of Australia, 1840-1848 prints created by John Gould, H.C. Richter and Elizabeth Gould. Learn more about the history of the magnificent John Gould prints at the CDU Art Gallery through the eyes of Dr Andrew Miller, an avid Gould print collector and bird enthusiast.

Dr Miller had kindly lent 19 of his original lithographic and hand-coloured prints, part of the The Birds of Australia, 1840-1848, for display in Our feathered friendsthe art of birds, an exhibition at the CDU Art Gallery that presents artists’ depictions of birds. The exhibition continues until 25 February 2017.

John Gould (b.1804–d.1881) was an eminent English naturalist, ornithologist and taxidermist who researched and wrote extensively on Australian wildlife. His major work, The Birds of Australia Vols.1-VII, was published in seven volumes, 1840–1848. The Birds of Australia consisted of 681 lithographic plates, which were meticulously hand-coloured. Only 250 sets were produced. Later Gould published Birds of Australia Supplement 1869 that documented 81 rarer Australian birds. The publications were issued to subscribers unbound.

The Birds of Australia drew on Gould’s expedition to Australia from 1838 to 1840 where, together with his wife Elizabeth Gould (b.1804–d.1841), he undertook to document the continent’s wildlife. They based themselves in Hobart, Tasmania and Scone, New South Wales, from where they travelled, drafted field sketches, shot birds and prepared bird skins for shipment to England. John Gilbert (b. 1810?–d.1845) also worked for John Gould as his Chief Collector. Gilbert travelled from England to Australia and traversed the continent documenting Australian birds and mammals from 1839 until his death. H.C. Richter travelled twice to Port Essington and the Coburg Peninsular, 1840 and 1841, to document birds.

Although Gould is recognised widely and attributed as the artist of The Birds of Australia, the prints were actually the work of artists Elizabeth Gould, H.C. Richter, William Hart, and Joseph Wolf. John Gould researched and wrote the text.

Refreshments will be served following the talk