The Port Jackson Painter collection

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The Copper-tailed Skink (Ctenotus taeniolatus), Leaf-tailed Gecko (Phyllurus platurus) and Blue-tongued Lizard (Tiliqua scincoides)The final group of water-colours are known as the Port Jackson Painter collection or Banks Mss 34. It is unknown how Sir Joseph Banks acquired the collection or its earlier history. It has been variously suggested that the drawings show the work of 2 or even 3 different painters. Some of the pictures were made in the Port Jackson area but others were probably made from specimens that had been brought back to England. Some of the images were copied and engraved and reproduced in John White's Journal of a Voyage to New South Wales 1790. There are various theories as to who the artists were but no conclusive evidence in favour of any contender has yet been discovered. The Museum acquired the collection in 1827 as a part of the Sir Joseph Banks bequest. The 69 drawings that make up the collection are mainly of natural history subjects (15 plants, 3 mammals, 32 birds, 5 fishes, 9 reptiles, 1 arthropod) but there are also 4 ethnographic studies. Clearly some of the ethnographic drawings in the Watling collection are by the same hand.

The Raper collection | The Watling collection | The Port Jackson Painter collection