1836 Melbourne Painting


This is a reproduction of a painting of Melbourne as it appeared in 1836.

The original painting is the work of R. Hoffman and the lower half of the painting is similar to a lithograph of Melbourne [Port Phillip] by John Adamson dated 1841.

Notes from the State Library tell us that this is a "Painting executed after 1836, depicting Melbourne at this time. Remnants of label, possibly from framer, attached to verso of stretcher bar l.c., mostly illegible. This painting appears to be a copy of a larger more detailed painting with dwellings identified (on display in Australian Manuscripts Collection, State Library of Victoria)."

The notes go on to tell us that "The painting shows an early view of Melbourne, probably reconstructed after 1836, with an elevated view of the Yarra River, and buildings and dwellings including those of John Batman, Captain W. Londsdale and tent of surveyor W. Darke. This painting is an early view of Melbourne looking north from the south bank of the Yarra. The river is the central motif, shown from an elevated perspective. Close to the river, the buildings and dwellings of the day are depicted, including the residences of both John Batman and Captain William Lonsdale, and the tent of surveyor WW Darke. Little is known about Hoffmann, although the inscription suggests he lived in South Yarra. The Library holds a larger version of this painting, donated by the Public Library Society in 1957, which includes a legend identifying the buildings and other features depicted. Both versions are executed in a naive style. The lower half of the painting shows compositional similarities to an 1841 lithograph of Melbourne by John Adamson."

This is a reproduction of the original held by the State Library of Victoria.

Our team of conservators have worked on a high resolution digital image in order to remove blemishes and artifacts such as stains, mould, scratches and damage caused by the handling of the original. We strive to provide authentic representations of the original work that are suitable for enlargements that retain the tones and character of the original.

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