Posts Tagged ‘Michael J Drew Group taking tea in a garden

17
Jul
22

Photographs: Images of Mongolian noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century (1910s-1920s)

July 2022

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man with cut-out pedestal]' 1910s-1920s

 

1. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man with cut-out pedestal]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

 

Rendering the past and the presence, shaping history and memory

These fascinating glass plate negatives from Mongolia have been saved for prosperity by the Endangered Archives Programme which “seeks to preserve cultural heritage and make it available to as wide an audience as possible… [The programme] primarily funds digitisation projects to record and preserve the content of archives. Our projects create digital material in a format that facilitates long-term preservation, and at least two copies of these are stored: a primary copy that remains at an appropriate repository in the country of origin, and a secondary copy held at the British Library… The EAP website provides access to these digital collections for research, education and enjoyment. We do not however distribute high resolution, print quality versions of images, referring requests for these back to the original holders of the archive. We also seek to ensure that the values of the people and communities from which the archives have come are respected and that they are consulted in any significant re-use of the digital material.”1

While the outcomes of the project are noble and valuable, in effect, these photographs will remain buried in the archive on the British Library website unless someone is specifically undertaking focused research on the history of Mongolian photography. I tried to contact the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia to use the images but got no reply. Thus, I use the images under fair use conditions for the purposes of education and research in order that a wider range of people around the world will actually get to see and appreciate them.

I have digitally cleaned all of the images to remove scratches and dust spots to present them to the best of their advantage. I wanted to know what size the glass plate negatives are but not even this information is included on the British Library website. No information on the image makers is available … but they were probably photographers making a living travelling from town to town taking portraits of local families, carrying their painted canvas backdrops applied to collapsible boards with them.

 

Images 1-18

The most interesting group of images in this posting are from one session which I have grouped in numbers 1-18 below. I have only a small idea in which order these photographs were taken. The time on the alarm clock is indistinguishable in some of the photographs and in others jumps from 12.55pm to 2.55pm to 4.35pm to 4.45pm. If we assume that the alarm clock was working during the portrait session (it could have been broken and manually changed to different positions), then this would indicate that the photoshoot took place over the course of one afternoon. What we do know is that these photographs were all taken in one location in one sitting and are of one extended family or village group wearing their finest clothes, posed in a portable, constructed studio setting.

In image number 1 (above) a man stands in front of a painted canvas backdrop of an effusive, rococo-style scene with window, acanthus decorated columns, heavy curtains decorated with tassels and profuse carved wood work. We can see the edge of the backdrop boards to the right of the man and also observe the piece of wire or rope which is holding them up at top right. The “set” or mise-en-scène (the stage of a theatrical production or the setting or surroundings of an event) is inside a house (not a traditional portable, round tent covered with skins or felt which in Mongolia is called a ger), for at right we can see wallpaper on the wall of the house. There are bare wooden floorboards covered in a patterned carpet with circular motifs and to the right is a bentwood chair. The man stands behind a prop – a probably wooden, cut-out decorated column – looking off camera with an air of authority. He is the only person in the twelve images that is so positioned (behind a column). He is probably a leader of the village and / or head of the household.

In image 2 a man sits on a chair on the same carpet with his hands on his knees staring straight into the camera lens. In his right hand is a set of prayer beads possibly made from mala seeds. The bentwood chair has been replaced to the right hand side with a more sturdy looking chair. In image 3 two men sit on chairs on the same carpet with a table between them, staring directly at the camera. Both men have their hands on their knees and one holds some prayer beads. They are probably father and son. On the table are what I think are prized possessions of the family and / or village: two decorated vases and what would have been a rare and valuable object in 1910s-1920s Mongolia, an alarm clock with bell. The vases, alarm clock and later, teapot, cups and saucers – the cups with handles, a very Western influence as tea in Mongolia was usually drunk in cups without handles2 – are a recurring presence in these photographs, perhaps signifying the status of the family being photographed.

Image number 4 shows a standing man and a women, possibly husband and wife, staring directly at the camera. The same two vases and clock are present on the table between them, but this time the table has been covered in an elaborately decorated tablecloth. Notice how the length of women’s sleeves completely cover her hands by some distance. The same carpet is present on the floor as it is in image number 5. In this fifth image the photographer has moved the couple, again probably husband and wife, along the backdrop so that the painted column appears directly between them above the more prominently displayed table, covered with the same tablecloth. Now there is only one vase displayed, directly behind the same alarm clock. Again, note the length of both male and female sleeves on their costumes, completely covering their hands by a long way.3 The relocation of the couple has cropped the window out of frame to the right, while the bentwood chair now makes a reappearance.

In image number 6 the photographer turns the camera horizontally and pulls back from the subjects to capture a family group, possibly a mother at second left accompanied by her two sons and daughter. All participants stand front on to the camera and stare directly into the camera lens but it is interesting to note the body language of the group: the men stand rigid and stiff, one with his hand on his hip, while the mother sways to her right and the daughter leans to her left, both unsure of the process of being photographed and the final outcome of the photograph. The same carpet is on the floor and two bentwood chairs are now to the right.

In the vertical image number 7 the photographer has moved forward to produce a more tightly cropped photograph, placing the two men directly in front of the table obscuring it and the vase (which can just be seen behind the men) from view. He (for undoubtedly at this time the photographer would have been a man) has also replaced the large carpet with a small carpet with diagonal decoration as its border, isolating the men so that they seem to float above the bare wooden floorboards. The man at right stares off camera to somewhere behind and to the left of the camera, while the man at left stares with disdain and a sense of defiance directly at the camera.

In image number 8 the photographer retains the closer perspective but moves nearer again, titling the camera down to observe the seated man (notice how the window at top right has been cropped from the previous image). Here the photographer balances the composition left to right using the prominent position of table, vases and alarm clock to offset the form of the seated man who stares straight at the camera. The carpet is the same as in the seventh image with its diagonal border, but this time you can see the profuse inner geometric pattern of dark and light shapes. In the family group which is image 9, the photographer has turned the camera horizontally so as to fit in the subjects of his composition, retaining the carpet with the diagonal edge decoration and light and dark inner shapes from the previous image. The not happy child holds her mother’s hand, the woman in the traditional noble headdress of the married Khalkha upper class women, a special hairstyle designed to mimic cow’s horns or, in another version, the wings of a mythical bird. “The basis of [the headdress] is a small silver cap with filigree, to which numerous silver, coral or turquoise ornaments are attached. The combed back hair is divided into two parts and formed into the “horns” with the help of several silver or bamboo pins. The lower part of the strands is braided in plaits. Rich women allow themselves to further decorate this part of the hair: the plaits are put into embroidered brocade covers with rows of coral and silver bands. For special events or for travelling a pointed hat (malagay) which looks like a crown is worn over the small cap. The hat is usually made of velvet and has colourful ribbons attached at the back. The top is sometimes decorated with a big coral or other stone.”4

In image number 10 the photographer has moved the group of men, possibly a seated father (or grandfather?) and his standing sons, much further down the painted backdrop completely cropping out the painted window. On the floor is the original carpet in image 1. All men stare directly at the camera with the seated father slightly in front of his sons. In image 11, the original carpet has been replaced by the second carpet which was seen in the ninth image, the one with the diagonal border. The background is in roughly the same position as can be seen when you compare the column behind the left hand figure in both photographs and the camera is at the same height… but the background must have been physically moved, because the roof support in image 10 is now much more to the left in image 11. In the latter image, the covered table, vases and alarm clock take pride of place, front and centre, with the three men standing to the side and behind the table. Two stare directly at the camera, whilst the other at right stands obliquely to the picture plane and stares off camera to the left. Such positioning of the figures suggests that the photographer had a knowledge of the poses of classical group portraiture and portrait photography in particular. Further, as we can observe in these photographs, “the portrait functioned as an extension of the ceremonies and rituals of daily life. Self-representation was now a major aspect of social life, because it could pave the way to obtaining a place of honor.”5 These photographs also function as a place where the intimacy and narrative of family life were exposed to the public eye, where private becomes public, and in the mise-en-scène of the stage-set the actors were posed to create a theatrical, representative view of how they wanted to see themselves – and how others should see them. This is a scene constructed explicitly for the portrait to … render present, to re-present the presence of the people themselves. And in the posing, directed by the photographer, the subjects assume the shape of a desired representation.

Image 12 is the only photograph in the group of twelve images taken indoors that features a woman on her own. Dressed in all her finery and wearing her traditional headdress the seated woman is posed frontally and stares straight at the camera, her hand lightly resting on her inner thighs. Behind her the column of the painted backdrop that was seen behind the man at left in the eleventh image is now directly behind her head and more of the backdrop has been recorded at her right: flowers, a lush garden with stairs and bannister railing, and a heavy brocade curtain with numerous tassels. The camera has again moved closer to the subject for the edge of the diagonally decorated carpet now appears at the bottom of the image with no floorboards being visible, whilst the top of the image has been framed just at the top of the painted backdrop. The revelatio of the pulled back curtain reveals a wished for, Western, utopian landscape, a paradise reached by the woman in all her finery on her magic carpet.

And the carpet truly does fly!

In image 13 the carpet has been moved down a set of steps onto the bare earth in front of a house with the table, and a different tablecloth, for company. The mise-en-scène is now a simple backdrop of a piece of white fabric which has been pinned by the photographer to the railing of the house – prescient of the work of photographer Richard Avedon and his series In the American West with similar frontal stance and direct gaze of the sitter (see below), although this anonymous photographer never closes in on the subject to fully isolate the subject against the white ground as happens in much conceptual, contemporary portrait photography. What the photographer does do over the remaining images (14-18) is move the camera forward and backward in order to frame his subject(s), changing the camera’s orientation for larger groups.

In image 14 the photographer has moved forward so as to more tightly crop the image: there is no earth and less of the window behind is visible; the same alarm clock as in previous images has made a reappearance. Image 15 is even more tightly cropped, with no carpet and even less window being visible… the alarm clock has been lost and now the sitter is positioned to the left of the table as opposed to image 14 when they were to the right. In image 16 (observe the bare table) and 17, the photographer has moved the camera around another side of the building: note the mud-caked wooden logs, part of the structure of the bottom of the house, the lack of railing and strong sun causing shadows to fall on the wall behind. In previous images (13-15) there is no shadow for the sitters were not in direct sunlight. In the final image, image 18, the photographer has moved the camera again to another wall of the house, this time to a backdrop of a cracked, bare earth wall with the carpet and table placed on the barren ground. In all of these portrait photographs the subject stares impassively at the camera.

In whatever “order” these photographs were taken, through analysis we can begin to see, and feel, and imagine, the choreographic dance that the photographer would have had to go through to capture the likeness of his sitters. We can imagine the cacophony of sound, the instructions to set up backdrops, to move the camera, to arrange the people (after they had dressed in their finest clothes) and extras (such as the table, tablecloth, alarm clock, vases and carpets) for each photograph – for the photographer to capture the person in perfect stillness, order out of the disorder. This dis/order is doubled by the storage of these photographs in an archive, that of the Endangered Archives Programme, where everything is supposedly kept in order but where, “Archives contain elements of truth and error, order and disorder and are infinitely fascinating. As both collections of records and repositories of data, archives are able to shape history and memory depending on how, when and by whom the materials are accessed. Their vastness allows for multiple readings to be unravelled over time.”6

And that is my hope for these images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century. That other people approach the material from different perspectives, different points of view, whether they be artistic, ethnographic, fashion, or Indigenous for example – that they also critique the ideas and systems of archives in order to understand why these images are in an archive, how they can be more freely distributed and studied, and what is their ongoing relevance to the history and culture of contemporary Mongolia. As with the posed photographs of Edward Curtis and his portrayal of The North American Indian, these photographs may “show us today some things that we may no longer have access to and give us a window into eyes of real human beings who were in the process of losing the lives they had known for centuries.”7

Time moves on, cultures change (today Mongolians wear Western clothes and only don traditional clothes for festivals and special events; in the winter they wear a Russian-style fur hat and padded jacket), technology and development take over… but these photographs still give us an important window into the soul of a people.

Dr Marcus Bunyan

Word count: 2,777

 

Footnotes

  1. Anonymous text. “Preservation through digitisation of rare photographic negatives from Mongolia (EAP264),” on the British Library Endangered Archives Programme website Nd [Online] Cited 13/06/2022
  2. Mongolian tea called suutei tsai is served with nearly every meal. The tea is served in small bowls as opposed to cups. The tea is made with green tea, milk, water and salt.
  3. “Both men and women wear “dels” (caftan-like, ankle-length padded silk robes lined with sheepskin for the winter and tied around the waist with a sashlike belt) in the winter and a “terlig” (thinly-lined coat similar to a del) in the summer… Dels are designed for horseback riding, keeping riders warm while not constraining them. They have high collars that can be buttoned or unbuttoned. The left side buttons close over the right side. The edges of the coat and sleeves are sometimes trimmed with velvet of another beautiful fabric. Sometimes a long sash or leather belt adorned with silver or copper ornaments is tied around the waist. Under theirs dels, Mongolians generally wear baggy trousers and a shirt…
    Men and women wear “Mongol gutal” (embroidered leather knee boots with thick soles and upturned toes). There are several explanations as to why the boots are made in this way. Some say they give riders confidence that they won’t slip from the stirrups. Other says that Buddhism is the reason: the upturned toes are said to be less likely to kill insects than conventional footwear. In the winter felt is placed in them for extra warmth…
    Headgear is often an indicator of where someone is from. Mongolia men sometimes don “loovus” (pointed hats) on feast days or weddings or other important occasions. These have traditionally been made of wolf or fox skin and are said offer good protection in the cold and wind. Other types of men’s hat include the “janjin malgai” and “toortsog”…
    Men used to wear their hair pulled back in a braid. Women wore theirs in two braids covered with velvet. The braids were worn in front of the shoulders and silver and coral ornaments were woven into them. Young girls wore multi braids joined at the temple with red thread…
    In the old days upper class women wore elaborate headdresses and sculpted the hair in bizarre horn-like designs with hardened mutton fat and tied their hair with jewellery pieces made of silver, turquoise and coral… During festivals, even some nomads wore their hair in massive headdresses, decorated with silver and coral, or tied their hair with large bows. A family’s wealth was often measured by precious stones and metals in a woman’s hair.”
    Text from various sources quoted in “Mongolian clothes: Beauty and Hygiene in Mongolia,” on the Facts and Details website, last updated April 2016 [Online] Cited 17/07/2022. For more information on traditional Mongolian dress please see this website
  4. Anonymous text. “Traditional headdresses of the Mongolian women,” on the Local Style website, 17/01/2013 [Online] Cited 07/07/2022
  5. Guillaume Blanc. “A History of Portrait Photography, Part I,” on the Blind Magazine website Nd [Online] Cited 05/07/2022
  6. Anonymous text. “Order and Disorder: Archives and Photography,” on the National Gallery of Victoria website [Online] Cited 17/07/2022
  7. Executive Director Shannon Keller O’Loughlin (Choctaw) of the Association on American Indian Affairs (AAIA). Email to the author, 1 June 2018 [Online] Cited 17/07/2022

.
Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image. All images are used under “fair use” conditions for the purpose of education and research and remain the copyright of the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia.

 

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

2. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

3. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is indistinguishable.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman and man]' 1910s-1920s

 

4. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman and man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is 4.45pm.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man and woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

5. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man and woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is 4.45pm.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men and two Mongolian women]' 1910s-1920s

 

6. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian men and two Mongolian women]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

7. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian men]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man with cut-out pedestal]' 1910s-1920s

 

8. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is 12.55pm.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men, two Mongolian women and a child]' 1910s-1920s

 

9. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian men, two Mongolian women and a child]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Three Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

10. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Three Mongolian men]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Three Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

11. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Three Mongolian men]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is 2.55pm.

 

Lady Hawarden. 'Clementina Maude, 5 Princes Gardens; Photographic Study' c. 1862-1863

 

Lady Clementina Hawarden (Viscountess, British 1822-1865)
Clementina Maude, 5 Princes Gardens; Photographic Study
c. 1862-1863
Albumen print; Sepia photograph mounted on green card
21.6 x 23.2cm
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Note the table with prominent fabric embroidery(?) pattern

 

 

Lady Clementina Hawarden, a noted amateur photographer of the 1860s, frequently photographed her children. Here, her second-eldest daughter Clementina Maude poses next to a mirror, in  which a bulky camera is reflected. The camera  seems to stand in for the photographer, making  this a mother-daughter portrait of sorts.

This photograph gives a good idea of Lady Hawarden’s studio and the way she used it. It was situated on the second floor of her house at 5 Princes Gardens in the South Kensington area of London. Here her daughter Clementina poses beside a mirror. A movable screen has been placed behind it, across the opening into the next room. A side table at the left balances a desk at the right. The figure of the young girl is partially balanced and echoed by the camera reflected in the mirror and the embroidery resting on the table beside it.

Hawarden appears to have worked with seven different cameras. The one seen in the mirror is the largest. Possibly there is a slight suggestion of a hand in the act of removing and/or replacing the lens cap to begin and end the exposure.

Text from the V&A website

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

12. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]' 1910s-1920s

 

13. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]' 1910s-1920s

 

14. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is 4.35pm.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]' 1910s-1920s

 

15. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Richard Avedon at work

 

Richard Avedon at work

 

Richard Avedon. 'Sandra Bennett, twelve year old, Rocky Ford, Colorado, August 23, 1980' 1980

 

Richard Avedon (American, 1923-2004)
Sandra Bennett, twelve year old, Rocky Ford, Colorado, August 23, 1980
1980
Gelatin silver print

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]' 1910s-1920s

 

16. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman and table]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Three Mongolian women and two Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

17. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Three Mongolian women and two Mongolian men]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

The time on the alarm clock is indistinguishable.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian women and table]' 1910s-1920s

 

18. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian women and table]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Notice the length of the sleeves which completely cover the hands by some distance.

 

 

Mongolia at the start of the 20th century was agrarian, and its people were highly stratified socially and economically. There were two classes of vassals: the khamjlaga, who under Manchu law were serfs for life of the local nobility and civil administrators; and the shavi, the vassals of the monastery estates. Trade in essentials like tea, rice, and tobacco was in the hands of Chinese companies, which willingly extended credit at high interest rates. The currency consisted of units of livestock, as well as tea bricks, small silver ingots, and some foreign coins. When the officials and nobility got into debt, the would increase their taxes in kind on the population. As a result, many Mongols were impoverished and occasionally rebellious, despite the risk of terrible punishment at the hands of the Qing authorities, who had built fortified administrative centres and garrison towns like Khovd and Uliastai to control Mongolia’s regions.

By 1911, when the Chinese Revolution broke out, unrest was widespread in Mongolia. In December the Manchu amban was ordered to leave, the Javzandamba was proclaimed the Bogd Khan (“Holy King”), and he declared the independence of Mongolia – Inner Mongolia and Tannu Tuva (Tyva), as well as Outer Mongolia. Also at that time, the Bogd Khan’s capital, Ikh Khüree (“Great Monastery”), was renamed Niislel Khüree (“Capital Monastery”). The Qing emperor abdicated in 1912, and the Republic of China was proclaimed.

Also that year Russia signed a treaty with the Bogd Khan’s government that recognized Mongolia, although the interpretation of this recognition between the two parties differed: Mongolia considered itself independent of China, while Russia characterized Mongolia as being “autonomous.” The Russian position was further underlined in 1913, when Russia and China issued a declaration stating that Mongolia was still under Chinese suzerainty. Mongolia objected, but this status was reinforced by a joint Russian-Chinese-Mongolian treaty in 1915, in which the Bogd Khan’s government was obliged to accept autonomy under Chinese suzerainty. As a result, the Bogd Khan was unable to unite Inner with Outer Mongolia, nor was he able to prevent Russia from colonizing Tuva.

Soviet power was established in St. Petersburg following the Russian Revolution of 1917, and it gradually was extended eastward across Russia. In August 1919 the Soviet Russian government recognized Mongolian autonomy, but within a few months Chinese troops had occupied Niislel Khüree and deposed the Bogd Khan. During that turbulent period, Mongolian nationalists Dansrangiin Dogsom, Dogsomyn Bodoo, and others formed underground resistance groups and established contact with Russian Bolsheviks.

In June 1920 a group of these revolutionaries formed the Mongolian People’s Party (MPP), and two months later several MPP members, including Soliin Danzan and Dambdyn Chagdarjav, were sent to Moscow to seek help from the Comintern (Third International) and to meet Bolshevik leader Vladimir Ilich Lenin. Two other revolutionaries, Damdiny Sükhbaatar and Khorloogiin Choibalsan, who had stayed in Siberia in the city of Irkutsk, made their way to the small town of Troitskosavsk on the border with Mongolia to organize the resistance. Meanwhile, tsarist cavalry units under the command of Baron Roman von Ungern-Sternberg (known as the “Mad Baron”) entered Mongolia from eastern Siberia, advanced on Niislel Khüree, drove out the Chinese occupation forces, and in February 1921 restored the Bogd Khan to the throne under the baron’s control.

The rule of the Mad Baron was cruel and bloody but relatively brief. In March 1921 the Mongolian revolutionaries gathered in Troitskosavsk and held the first MPP congress, where they adopted a program of action and appointed a provisional cabinet. A Mongolian revolutionary force was assembled under Sükhbaatar’s command that, along with Soviet army units, advanced southward into Mongolia and in July 1921 captured Niislel Khüree. A “people’s government” of Mongolia was appointed, with Bodoo as prime minister, and July 11 subsequently was celebrated as the anniversary of its establishment (now the first day of the naadam sports festival). The Bogd Khan was reinstated as a constitutional monarch with limited powers. The baron was captured in August, handed over to the Soviet authorities, and executed. In November Danzan and Sükhbaatar were sent to Moscow to meet Lenin, and the first Mongolian-Soviet treaty was concluded.

Julia Chandler (ed.,). Colonial and Postcolonial East and Southeast Asia. Britannica Educational Publishing, 2017, pp. 104-109.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

19. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Notice the long time exposure of the camera, indicated by the blur of the man’s dress at lower left.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

20. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men with two vases]' 1910s-1920s

 

21. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian men with two vases]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Again, not the length of the sleeves which completely cover the hands.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man with two vases and clock]' 1910s-1920s

 

22. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man with two vases and clock]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman with clock]' 1910s-1920s

 

23. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman with clock]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Four Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

24. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Four Mongolian men]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men]' 1910s-1920s

 

25. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian men]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Not the same painted backdrop as image 24.

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian men with two clocks]' 1910s-1920s

 

26. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian men with two clocks]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

 

Preservation through digitisation of rare photographic negatives from Mongolia (EAP264)

Aims and objectives

The Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording in Mongolia houses over 160,000 photo negatives, including 10,552 glass plate negatives. This project aims to digitise all these glass plate negatives, the majority of which contain images taken between 1921 and 1945 and have never been printed. The collection covers a wide range of topics such as the army and military, public health, animal husbandry, archaeological finds, nature, prominent Mongolian people, people who were politically repressed during the 1930s, historical documents, construction works, industrial development, Mongolia’s contribution to the victory of WWII, culture, religion and politics.

The collection is housed in the Archives building, which has no adequate and controlled preservation environment and lacks humidity and air control. The glass plates are kept in paper envelopes on shelves where they are exposed to physical mishandling and deterioration in image quality. Only 3,000 have been catalogued. Since no digital images are available to researchers and the general public, these glass plates are in danger of being exposed to frequent printing which represents a threat to the physical condition of the originals themselves. Once degraded in quality or destroyed due to frequent printing and mishandling, this unique pre-industrialised history of Mongolia will be lost for ever.

As the originals will eventually be too fragile for frequent handling, the only way of preserving and providing access to users of this valuable collection is through digitisation. The remaining 7,000 glass plates will also be catalogued. Training schemes will be developed to preserve and further restore archival photographs and the introduction of this digital archive will inspire the Archives, the MSV Foundation and other individuals to carry out further projects to help preserve and digitise the remaining archival holdings.

 

Outcomes

Research and a visual inspection have been carried out on over 7,000 uncatalogued “orphan” glass negative plates and a bulk of them have been cleaned from dirt, dust and paints.

A total of 10,089 glass negative plates have been digitised. Uncatalogued digitised images have been sorted out either into existing or new collections of the Archives thus enriching its catalogued photographic contents.

Some Archives’ staff have received professional training in digitising technology as well as in digital archives handling. The successful implementation of the project serves to testify that cooperation between the Archives and other national cultural bodies, including MSV Foundation, is vital for the future in preserving and restoring the Archives’ stocks.

This has been the first ever major project funded by foreign institutions and a great challenge for the MSV Foundation. It is considered that the project has been a great success which will certainly add to the good reputation of the Foundation locally.

Thanks to the project, the MSV Foundation will be able to bring more and more historic film and photographic enthusiasts closer together in safeguarding the nation’s cinematographic and photographic heritage.

The original glass negative plates are still housed in the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording. Digital copies have been deposited with the Archives, MSV Foundation and the British Library.

Anonymous text. “Preservation through digitisation of rare photographic negatives from Mongolia (EAP264),” on the British Library Endangered Archives Programme website Nd [Online] Cited 13/06/2022

 

Unknown photographer. 'Prince Navaantseren of Tsetsen Khanate – one of the four Khanates of the Khalha (Outer Mongolia excluding three Durvut banners) Mongolia' 1910s

 

27. Unknown photographer
Prince Navaantseren of Tsetsen Khanate – one of the four Khanates of the Khalha (Outer Mongolia excluding three Durvut banners) Mongolia
1910s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

28. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Note the same carpet as image 27… taken at the same photo session

 

Michael J Drew (1873-1943) 'Group taking tea in a garden' between 1890 and 1900

 

Michael J Drew (Australian, 1873-1943)
Group taking tea in a garden

 

James Fox Barnard (1874-1945) '[Tea on the verandah]' c. 1900

 

James Fox Barnard (Australian, 1874-1945)
[Tea on the verandah]
c. 1900

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

29. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Note the same carpet as image 27… taken at the same photo session

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man with two teacups and saucers]' 1910s-1920s

 

30. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man with two teacups and saucers]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Two Mongolian women]' 1910s-1920s

 

31. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Two Mongolian women]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

32. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

33. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

34. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

35. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Note the same carpet as image 34… taken at the same photo session

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

36. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Note the same carpet as image 34… taken at the same photo session

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian man]' 1910s-1920s

 

37. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian man]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman with clock and flowers]' 1910s-1920s

 

38. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman with clock and flowers]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman with two children]' 1910s-1920s

 

39. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman with two children]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

40. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman and child]' 1910s-1920s

 

41. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman and child]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

42. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

43. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Unknown photographer. 'Untitled [Mongolian woman]' 1910s-1920s

 

44. Unknown photographer
Untitled [Mongolian woman]
1910s-1920s
Glass plate negative
The original material is held by the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording, Mongolia
From Images of noblemen and noblewomen of early 20th century [1910s-1920s], British Library, Endangered Archives Programme EAP264/1/8/2
https://eap.bl.uk/archive-file/EAP264-1-8-2

 

Suresh Punjabi (Indian, b. 1957) 'Untitled (Portrait of a young tea seller) Suhag Studio, Nagda, Madhya Pradesh' 1987

 

Suresh Punjabi (Indian, b. 1957)
Untitled (Portrait of a young tea seller) Suhag Studio, Nagda, Madhya Pradesh
1987

 

 

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20
Sep
15

Exhibition: ‘Storm in a Teacup’ at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery, Mornington

Exhibition dates: 24th July – 27th September 2015

 

Hotham Street Ladies (est. Australia 2007) 'Dark tea' 2015

 

Hotham Street Ladies (est. Australia 2007)
Dark tea (installation photo)
2015
Royal icing, butter cream icing, fondant, food dye, found objects
Dimensions variable
Courtesy of the artists

 

 

This is the best thematic group exhibition I have seen in Melbourne and surrounds this year.

Every piece in the exhibition is visually stimulating and intelligently constructed, all works combining to make an engaging exhibition. Nothing is superfluous, every work having something interesting to say, whether it is about the ceremony of tea drinking, colonisation, global warming, Stolen Generations or social mores. Congratulations must go to the curators and artists for their efforts.

Particular favourites where the Hotham Street Ladies Dark Tea (2015, below) made of royal icing, butter cream icing, fondant, food dye, and found objects; the many sculptural objects which form the backbone of the exhibition, especially the work of Sharon West and Penny Byrne; and the wonderful vintage photographs that are displayed in the foyer of the gallery.

Accompanying this exhibition is another excellent exhibition, Ways to draw: A selection from the permanent collection by Betty Churcher, on till 27th September as well. If you want a day out from Melbourne with lunch in Mornington, some seriously good art and a drive along the coast, you could do no better than visit the gallery in the next week. Highly recommended.

Dr Marcus Bunyan

.
Many thankx to the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

 

Hotham Street Ladies (est. Australia 2007) 'Dark tea' 2015 (detail)

Hotham Street Ladies (est. Australia 2007) 'Dark tea' 2015 (detail)

 

Hotham Street Ladies (est. Australia 2007)
Dark tea (details)
2015
Royal icing, butter cream icing, fondant, food dye, found objects
Dimensions variable
Courtesy of the artists

 

Charles Blackman (b. Australia 1928) 'Feet beneath the table' 1956

 

Charles Blackman (Australian, 1928-2018)
Feet beneath the table
1956
Tempera and oil on composition board
106.5 x 121.8cm
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through the NGV Foundation by Barbara Blackman, Honorary Life Benefactor, 2005

 

 

Charles Blackman first encountered Lewis Caroll’s book, Alice in Wonderland, through a talking book for the blind which his wife, Barbara was listening to. Her developing blindness resulted in telescopic vision, spatial disorientation and a shrinking visual field. She was also pregnant with their first child and her distorted body image also had parallels with Alice’s experiences. By painting Alice at the Mad Hatter’s tea party Blackman could express his wife’s feeling of bewilderment and disorientation.

 

E. Phillips Fox (b. Australia 1865; d. Victoria 1915) 'The arbour' 1910

 

E. Phillips Fox (b. Australia 1865; d. Victoria 1915)
The arbour
1910
Oil on canvas
190.5 x 230.7cm
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Felton Bequest 1916

 

 

Melbourne born E. Phillips Fox, described as ‘one of the greatest of Australia’s Impressionist painters and the most gifted of her colourists’1 went to Paris in 1887 to study at the Ecole des Beaux Arts where he encountered the work of the French Impressionists. He remained in Paris for several years but made frequent trips back to Melbourne to visit his family. The Arbour was painted in Paris in Fox’s garden but is based upon observations of family life in his brother’s garden in Malvern. The depiction of an elegant family taking tea al fresco is a study of refined gentility. The Arbour was exhibited at both the Royal Academy and the Paris Salon exhibitions and was regarded by Fox as the finest thing he had done.2 At the time the painting was much admired for its ‘subtle lights ad shadow’3 and his exemplary ‘use of delicate colour and refined harmonies.’4

  1. Courier Mail, 12 May 1949
  2. Sydney Morning Herald, 13 October 1913
  3. Sydney Morning Herald, 13 October 1913
  4. Le Courrier Australien, Sydney, 15 April 1949

 

Clare Humphries (b. Australia 1973) 'Some things were out in the open' 2007

 

Clare Humphries (Australian, b. 1973)
Some things were out in the open
2007
Pigment print on Hahnemühle photo rag paper (ed. 3/5)
63.0 x 62.0cm
Courtesy of the artist

 

Adam Hill (Blak Douglas) (b. Australia 1970) 'Not everyone’s cup of tea' 2009

 

Adam Hill (Blak Douglas) (Australian, b. 1970)
Not everyone’s cup of tea
2009
Synthetic polymer paint on canvas
150.0 x 260.0cm
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Purchased 2009

 

Kendal Murray (b. Australia 1958) 'Exceed speed, mislead, concede' 2011

 

Kendal Murray (Australian, b. 1958)
Exceed speed, mislead, concede
2011
Mixed media assemblage
18.0 x 24.0 x 14.0cm
Courtesy of the artist and Arthouse Gallery, Sydney

 

Penny Byrne (b. Australia 1965) 'Tea for two in Tuvalu' 2011

 

Penny Byrne (Australian, b. 1965)
Tea for two in Tuvalu
2011
Vintage porcelain figurine, vintage, Action man accessories, vintage coral, glass fish, epoxy resin, epoxy putty, retouching medium, powder pigments
15.0 x 19.0cm
Private Collection

 

Penny Byrne (b. Australia 1965) 'Tea for two in Tuvalu' 2011

 

Penny Byrne (Australian, b. 1965)
Tea for two in Tuvalu (installation photo)
2011
Vintage porcelain figurine, vintage, Action man accessories, vintage coral, glass fish, epoxy resin, epoxy putty, retouching medium, powder pigments
15.0 x 19.0cm
Private Collection

 

 

This piece was inspired by an underwater cabinet meeting held in 2009 by Maldives President Mohammed Nasheed in a campaign to raise awareness for activity on climate change. The thirty minute meeting was held six metres below sea level and was attended by eleven cabinet members calling upon all countries to cut their emissions to halt further temperature rises.

Polynesian island nation of Tuvalu, located in the Pacific Ocean midway between Hawaii and Australia, experienced a severe drought in 2011. A sate of emergency was declared and rationing of fresh-water took place which restricted households on some of the islands to two buckets of fresh water per day. Tuvalu is also especially susceptible to changes in sea level and it is estimated that a sea level rise of 20 to 40 centimetres in the next 100 years could make Tuvalu uninhabitable.

 

Kate Bergin (b. Australia 1968) 'The hunt for a room of one’s own' 2012

 

Kate Bergin (Australian, b. 1968)
The hunt for a room of one’s own
2012
Oil on canvas on board
75.0 x 101.0 cm
Private Collection

 

 

Kate Bergin draws upon Dutch and Flemish seventeenth century tradition of still life painting to comment on our attitudes to animals. Bergin stages the scene on a crumpled white tablecloth upon which a large fox, based on a taxidermy fox she bought on eBay, regally sits centre stage. Meticulously rendered native birds, including a honeyeater, finch and triller, are based on photographs of specimens from the Melbourne Museum Collection. They flit about unperturbed by the introduced predator. Teaspoons, representing the impulse for collecting, entangle the fox and bird. Together with a teapot and cup, precariously placed, they contribute to the overarching sense of impending chaos.

Both afternoon tea and the fox represent English upper class social mores and were introduced into the colonies following British settlement. The fox arrived in 1855, brought in for recreational hunting, and has been a major cause of native bird extinctions. Fox numbers are increasing in some areas further threatening the precarious balance between wild life and introduced species.

 

Sharon West (b. Australia 1963) 'Two Koori Tribesmen receive a gift of afternoon tea from local colonists' 2014

 

Sharon West (Australian, b. 1963)
Two Koori Tribesmen receive a gift of afternoon tea from local colonists (installation photo)
2014
Mixed media assemblage
15.0 x 46.0 x 30.0cm
Courtesy of the artist

 

Heather Shimmen (b. Australia 1957) 'Tip me up' 2005

 

Heather Shimmen (Australian, b. 1957)
Tip me up (installation photo)
2005
Linocut on paper and organza (ed. 7/30)
56.0 x 76.0cm
Courtesy of the artist and Australian Galleries, Melbourne and Sydney

 

Trent Jansen (b. Australia 1981) 'Briggs family tea service' 2011

 

Trent Jansen (Australian, b. 1981)
Briggs family tea service (installation photo)
2011
Slip cast porcelain, bull kelp, wallaby pelt, copper and brass
George (teapot) 22.5 x 20.5 x 13.0cm; Woretermoeteyenner (sugar bowl) 16.0 x 13.5 x 9.0cm; Dolly (milk jug) 12.5 x 12.5 x 8.5cm; John (teacup) 7.0 x 8.5 x 8.0cm; Eliza (teacup) 7.5 x 10.5 x 8.0cm; Mary (teacup) 10.0 x 9.0 x 6.5cm
Courtesy of Broached Commissions, Melbourne

 

 

The Briggs family tea service represents the marriage of George Briggs, a free settler, to Woretermoeteyenner of the Pairrebeenne people in Van Diemen’s Land and the four children they had together. Briggs arrived from Bedfordshire in 1791 and learned to speak the language of the local Pairrebeenne people, trading tea, flour and sugar fro kangaroo, wallaby and seal skins. It is understood that he became good friends with the leader of the Pairrebeenne people, Mannalargenna, and by 1810 he partnered his daughter Woretermoeteyenner. Their marriage meant she had to adapt to a way of life that merged her traditional cultural values with the ways of British settlers. The teapot and sugar bowl represent the parents while their first daughter, Doll Mountgarret Briggs is symbolised in the milk jug and the three cups each signify their other children John, Eliza and Mary.

The tea service is a hybrid design bringing together materials common to both cultures. To realise the set Jansen worked with Rod Bamford on the ceramic elements, Oliver Smith for the brass and copper and Vicki West, who uses the traditional methods of her Tasmanian Aboriginal ancestors, worked with the bull kelp components.

 

eX de Medici (b. Australia 1959) 'Blue (Bower-Bauer)' 1998–2000

 

eX de Medici (Australian, b. 1959)
Blue (Bower-Bauer) (installation photo)
1998-2000
Watercolour over black pencil on paper
114.0 x 152.8 cm
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Purchased 2004

 

eX de Medici (b. Australia 1959) 'Blue (Bower-Bauer)' 1998-2000 (detail)

 

eX de Medici (Australian, b. 1959)
Blue (Bower-Bauer) (detail)
1998-2000
Watercolour over black pencil on paper
114.0 x 152.8cm
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra Purchased 2004

 

 

A turning point in eX de Medici’s career came in 1998 when she saw an exhibition of watercolours by Ferdinand Bauer comprising 2,000 rarely seen images of native flora and fauna made when Bauer was official artist on Matthew Flinder’s historic circumnavigation of Australia in 1801-03. Previously working with tattoo imagery, Medici found the intricate works so compelling she decided to change course and ‘retrograde’ herself and explore watercolour as a medium.1

Referencing Australia’s Bower bird that adorns its nest with anything blue, Medici entangles the history of vanitas painting with commentary about the desire to seek permanence and affirmation in the accumulation of things. The broken willow pattern platter, upturned jugs and cups, amassed with so many other decorative and functional objects, are juxtaposed with skulls, fruit and flowers – symbols of mortality. A reaction to what she considered John Howard’s regressive politics at the time, the work ‘is a kind of a backhanded discussion about colonising our minds with retroactive ideas’.2

  1. Ted Gott. ‘eX deMedici an epic journey on a Lilliputian scale’ Art and Australia Vol. 40, No. 1, Spring 2002, p. 105
  2. eX deMedici in Paul Flynn. Artist Profile #5, March 2008, pp. 28-35.

 

 

Storm in a Teacup reflects upon tea drinking in Australia. Introduced by the British colonials, the afternoon tea party was an attempt to ‘civilise’ the land. Tea drinking became so popular in the colonies that by 1888 the amount of tea consumed per capita exceeded the amount consumed in England. Soon after, billy tea was to become an enduring symbol of the pioneering spirit, immortalised by Henry Lawson’s stories published under the title While the billy boils.

Beginning with elegant paintings of the afternoon tea table from E. Phillips Fox and Arthur Streeton, the exhibition goes on to explore the darker side of tea drinking and the social and environmental impacts of the humble cup of tea. Michael Cook’s Object (table), 2015, provides an alternative history to the narrative of colonialism while Sharon West and Adam Hill both use humour to subvert colonial understandings of the afternoon tea party as an occasion of refined gentility.

The humble cuppa has been around for thousands of years, but this exhibition explores how a popular beverage can impact on us culturally, socially, environmentally and politically. There is more to debate than just the proper way to make a cup of tea. Storm in a teacup explores far-reaching issues brewing from tea, including the imposition of one culture upon another – especially on the colonial frontier; the production of ceramics and the environmental impacts of porcelain and its production; gender stereotypes and socialisation through tea parties. The exhibition also reflects upon tea drinking ceremonies in Asia within a western Orientalist paradigm and tea drinking as an occasion for familial cohesiveness and disconnect.”

Text from the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

 

Mark James Daniel (1867-1949) 'Verandah, "Harefield" - afternoon tea' Feb 1900

 

Mark James Daniel (Australian, 1867-1949)
Verandah, “Harefield” – afternoon tea
Feb 1900
Glass negative
8.5 x 11.0cm (quarter plate)
Collection of the State Library of Victoria

 

Michael J Drew (1873-1943) 'Group taking tea in a garden' between 1890 and 1900

 

Michael J Drew (Australian, 1873-1943)
Group taking tea in a garden
between 1890 and 1900
Glass negative
12.2 x 16.5cm (half plate)
Collection of the State Library of Victoria

 

Rex Hazlewood (1886-1968) '[Men drinking billy tea]' 1911 - 1927

 

Rex Hazlewood (Australian, 1886-1968)
[Men drinking billy tea]
1911-1927
Silver gelatin print
Collection of the State Library of New South Wales

 

Anonymous photographer. 'Afternoon tea at "Vivaleigh"' 1917

 

Anonymous photographer
Afternoon tea at “Vivaleigh”
1917
Gelatin silver print
12 x 16cm
Collection of the State Library of Victoria

 

James Fox Barnard (1874-1945) 'Lawn, Arylie, Hobart' c. 1900

 

James Fox Barnard (Australian, 1874-1945)
Lawn, Arylie, Hobart
c. 1900
Glass negative
8.5 x 11.0cm (quarter plate)
Collection of the State Library of Victoria

 

James Fox Barnard (1874-1945) '[Tea on the verandah]' c. 1900

 

James Fox Barnard (Australian, 1874-1945)
[Tea on the verandah]
c. 1900
Glass negative
8.5 x 11.0cm (quarter plate)
Collection of the State Library of Victoria

 

Installation photograph of the exhibition 'Storm in a Teacup' at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

Installation photograph of the exhibition 'Storm in a Teacup' at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

Installation photograph of the exhibition 'Storm in a Teacup' at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

Installation photograph of the exhibition 'Storm in a Teacup' at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

Installation photograph of the exhibition 'Storm in a Teacup' at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

 

Installation photograph of the exhibition Storm in a Teacup at the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

 

 

Tea is the medium of many a complex and commonplace rituals. Adopted in a variety of ceremonies and customs across the globe, its unique and symbolic place in our lives is subtle and powerful. Whether a quick cuppa around the kitchen table or a lavish display of refined gentility; from billy tea to Asian tea-drinking ceremonies, tea has played an important role in international trade but more curiously in facilitating social cohesiveness.

Comprising approximately 50 works including painting, photography, sculpture and installation Storm in a Teacup features artists such as Chares Blackman, John Perceval, Emma Minnie Boyd, E. Phillips Fox and contemporary artists Stephen Bowers, Danie Mellor, Penny Byrne, Rosalie Gasgoigne, Matthew Sleeth, eX de Medici, Anne Zahalka, Polixeni Papapetrou and a mad tea party installation by Hotham Street Ladies.

Tea is said to have first been invented in China around 2700 BC, with the earliest records of tea consumption dating to 1000BC. Initially consumed as a medicinal drink, it became widely popular as a common beverage and traded across Asia and Europe during the 16th century. It was King Charles II’s wife Catherine of Portugal who is said to have brought the tea habit to Great Britain. Indeed, the afternoon tea party first became fashionable in the seventeenth century following Queen Catherine de Braganza’s fondness for serving the beverage at Whitehall in London. It wasn’t until the 18th century that it became widely consumed with tea smuggling bringing the tipple to the masses and later influenced the Boston Tea Party.

Tea drinking became a demonstration of social aspirations and grew in popularity giving rise to a subtle orchestration of manners, dress and serving paraphernalia which created new forms of commodity consumption. In the colonies of New South Wales and Victoria afternoon tea parties were a lavish display of settler understandings of refined gentility that were an attempt to signal allegiance to the values of the home country and ground the displaced community in their originating culture. In this respect the afternoon tea party expressed collective understandings of British identity and was a means of domesticating and civilising the alien terrain of the colonies.

Press release from the Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery

 

Clare Humphries (b. Australia 1973) 'Family confection II' 2015

Clare Humphries (b. Australia 1973) 'Family confection II' 2015

 

Clare Humphries (Australian, b. 1973)
Family confection II (installation photos)
2015
Sugar cubes stained with coffee and tea
Dimensions variable
Courtesy of the artist

 

Giuseppe Romeo (b. Australia 1958) Subjective landscape, 'Of consequence rather than reason' 2015

DSC1644-WEB

 

Giuseppe Romeo (Australian, b. 1958)
Subjective landscape, ‘Of consequence rather than reason’ (installation photos)
2015
Found discarded objects, bitumen, paint
80.0 x 100.0 x 60.0cm
Courtesy of the artist

 

 

Guiseppe Rome asks the simple question: ‘What are you going to do with it all?’

Romeo recalls the tea sets his mother and aunts possessed and the ‘good set’ kept for special occasions that were rarely used. In this work a silver platter is the support for a silver cake stand upon which a teapot, creamer, sugar bowl and various serving implements jostle with items required to clean up the mess. The bat, ball and stumps are a reference to playing cricket which ‘became an excuse for a big afternoon tea party in England’. A ribbon of wire holds it all together ‘like a dream from Alice in Wonderland when nothing is as it seems’, while a tinkling melody from a music box is a lullaby that sends us in to a contented sleep.

Romeo coats the sculpture in bitumen then paints it entirely in white. The effect is reminiscent of excavated items from an ancient ruin, as if w are peering upon the remains from a modern day Pompeii – artefacts that have been covered in lava and buried. This work alludes to the ways in which we deceive ourselves and ‘attempt to keep it all together through consumption but ultimately we can’t’.

 

Samantha Everton (b. Australia 1971) 'Camellia' 2009

 

Samantha Everton (Australian, b. 1971)
Camellia
2009
From the series Vintage dolls 2009
Pigment print on rag paper (ed. AP2)
106.0 x 114.0cm
Courtesy of the artist and Anthea Polson Art, Queensland

 

Robyn Phelan (b. Australia 1965) 'Porcelain wall – ode to an obsession' 2010-15

 

Robyn Phelan (Australian, b. 1965)
Porcelain wall – ode to an obsession (installation photo)
2010-15
Porcelain, paper, clay, cobalt oxide, timber, pigment, Jingdezhen tissue transfer
240.0 x 122.0 x 42.0cm
Courtesy of the artist

 

Robyn Phelan (b. Australia 1965) 'Porcelain wall – ode to an obsession' 2010-15 (detail)

 

Robyn Phelan (Australian, b. 1965)
Porcelain wall – ode to an obsession (detail)
2010-15
Porcelain, paper, clay, cobalt oxide, timber, pigment, Jingdezhen tissue transfer
240.0 x 122.0 x 42.0cm
Courtesy of the artist

 

 

Robyn Phelan undertook a residency at the Pottery Workshop and Experimental Sculptural Factory of Jingdezhen, Jiangxi Province in China in 2008. Jingdezhen is known as the porcelain capital because it has been the centre of China’s ceramic production, beginning in the fourteenth century Yuan Dynasty, where fine porcelain was first exported all over the world.

Deposits of kaolinite, a clay found at Mt Kaolin nearby which can sustain very high firing temperatures produced a superior white porcelain of increased strength and translucency. Items made from kaolinite were fired with cobalt landscape designs and were highly sought after by European collectors. Over the centuries, because of excessive mining, the mountain’s deposits have become depleted. Phelan’s work is a lament to the desecration of the mountain and a reminder of the potential destructiveness of consumer desire.

 

Penny Byrne (b. Australia 1965) '‘Let’s forget about global warming’ said Alice ‘and have a cup of tea instead!’' 2010

 

Penny Byrne (Australian, b. 1965)
‘Let’s forget about global warming’ said Alice ‘and have a cup of tea instead!’ (installation photo)
2010
Vintage porcelain figurine, found toys, epoxy resin, epoxy putty, retouching medium, powder pigments
80.0 x 33.0cm
Williams Sinclair Collection

 

Penny Byrne (b. Australia 1965) '‘Let’s forget about global warming’ said Alice ‘and have a cup of tea instead!’' 2010 (detail)

 

Penny Byrne (Australian, b. 1965)
‘Let’s forget about global warming’ said Alice ‘and have a cup of tea instead!’ (detail)
2010
Vintage porcelain figurine, found toys, epoxy resin, epoxy putty, retouching medium, powder pigments
80.0 x 33.0cm
Williams Sinclair Collection

 

 

Penny Byrne’s reworked porcelain conversation piece was motivated by Republican Vice-Presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s cry to ‘drill, baby, drill’ during her campaign in 2008. A call for increase off-shore drilling of petroleum, including sites such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Palin claimed ‘that’s what we hear all across the country in our rallies because people are so hungry for those domestic sources of energy to be tapped into’.1

In Byrne’s piece the patriotic figures gorge themselves, blithely overindulging without care to the wastage. The new Disney production of Alice in Wonderland directed by Tim Burton had just been released and this led Byrne to reflect upon the Mad Hatter’s tea party in which tea was drunk all day because time stood still and was stuck at tea-time.

  1. Transcript: The Vice-Presidential Debate, 2 October 2008. Reprinted in the New York Times, 23 May 2012.

 

Sharon West (b. Australia 1963) 'Joseph Banks’ tea party for a Botany Bay tribesman is ruined by flies and spiders' 2014

 

Sharon West (Australian, b. 1963)
Joseph Banks’ tea party for a Botany Bay tribesman is ruined by flies and spiders
2014
Digital print on paper (ed. 2/5)
66.0 x 57.0cm (sheet)
Courtesy of the artist

 

 

Sharon West’s recreation of an afternoon tea party is set in the early days of first contact. Joseph Banks was the botanist who sailed with Captain Cook on the Endeavour on the first voyage of discovery which mapped the east coast of Australia between 1768 and 1771. While ashore he made an extensive collection of native flora and fauna which was sent back to natural history museums in England. Banks was also instrumental in the British government’s decision to colonise the New South Wales settlement.

 

Rosalie Gascoigne (b. New Zealand 1917; arr. Australia 1943; d. Canberra 1999) 'The tea party' 1980

 

Rosalie Gascoigne (b. New Zealand 1917; arr. Australia 1943; d. Canberra 1999)
The tea party (installation photo)
1980
Painted wood, celluloid, plastic, enamelled metal, feathers
83.0 x 35.0 x 20.0cm
Private collection

 

Rosalie Gascoigne (b. New Zealand 1917; arr. Australia 1943; d. Canberra 1999) 'The tea party' 1980 (detail)

 

Rosalie Gascoigne (b. New Zealand 1917; arr. Australia 1943; d. Canberra 1999)
The tea party (detail)
1980
Painted wood, celluloid, plastic, enamelled metal, feathers
83.0 x 35.0 x 20.0cm
Private collection

 

 

Rosalie Gascoigne found the kewpie dolls amongst a large number of discarded things from an abandoned sideshow at the Bungendore dump in the summer of 1976. ‘I thought “Oh, those dollies, they’re having a … very joyful … picnic. They’re … in the paddock, they’ve got all these old things … they’ve sat down on the teapots and waved their wings around.”

For Gascoigne beauty existed in the most humble of objects and the wear and tear from use only added to the appeal. The enamel teapots were also found at various dumps and were a particular focus of her collecting.

‘I had a thing about enamelware because I see it as being elegant. People see the holes in it. I was collecting brown and white at the same time. To me it had a sort of elegance that a Dalmatian dog has, spotty, very elegant’.1

  1. Rosalie Gascoigne, excerpts from her correspondence, email communication with Martin Gascoigne, 13 March 2015

 

Julie Dowling (b. Australia 1969) Badimaya people, Western Australia 'White with one' 2003

 

Julie Dowling (Australian, b. 1969)
Badimaya people, Western Australia
White with one
2003
Synthetic polymer paint and red ochre on canvas
121.0 x 100.0 cm
Collection of Jane Kleimeyer and Anthony Stuart

 

 

Julie Dowling’s painting is a poignant reminder of the Stolen Generations and the plight of many young girls, forcibly removed from their families, who were brought up in government institutions and trained to be domestic servant to white families. Girls were targeted because women were considered the ‘uplifters’ or ‘civilisers’ of their communities and as future mothers their education into the values of white society was deemed essential to enable successful assimilation. Girls in service were supposed to receive a wage but often this was retained by their employer and not passed on. Dowling points out it is also a history of Stolen wages.

 

Michael Cook (b. Australia 1968) Bidjara people, south-west Queensland 'Object (table)' 2015

 

Michael Cook (Australian, b. 1968)
Bidjara people, south-west Queensland
Object (table)
2015
Inkjet print on Hahnemühle cotton rag (ed. 2/4 + 2AP)
140.0 x 99.0cm
Courtesy of the artist and THIS IS NO FANTASY + dianne tanzer gallery, Melbourne

 

 

Michael Cook’s photographic tableau ‘turns the table’ on racism. By depicting the body of a white woman as a functional object in service to others, Cook considers the dehumanisation and objectification of one race of people by another in the history of slavery.

The double portrait on the back wall is by Johann Zoffany from 1778, and features Dido Elizabeth Belle (1761-1804) who was born into slavery in the West Indies. The daughter of an African mother, her father was an English naval officer who left her to the care of his uncle, Lord William Murray, where she was raised as an equal with Murray’s niece. Murray was instrumental in outlawing slavery in the United Kingdom in 1772. In the painting Zoffany depicts the two women standing together, the niece affectionately reaching out to Belle. Hence Cook’s afternoon tea is also a reminder that prejudice and racial inequality can be surmounted.

 

Yenny Huber (b. Austria 1980; arr. Australia 2000) 'Room No. 14' 2006

 

Yenny Huber (b. Austria 1980; arr. Australia 2000)
Room No. 14
2006
Digital print on aluminium panel (ed. 1/6)
27.2 x 27.2cm
Warrnambool Art Gallery, Victoria

 

 

Underpinned by the belief that any one person is comprised of diverse, fragmentary and often illusory selves, Yenny Huber explores the various ego states that reside within. This photograph is a self portrait taken in a hotel room, but it is also an impersonation of an identity available to women. Tea-drinking was once described as ‘an infallible sign of an old maid’1 and in this work Huber offers us an image of a good Catholic girl, knees together, elbows in, sitting demurely on the couch sipping tea. It is an image of femininity constrained by the dictates of religion and outdated socially sanctioned ideals of respectable female behaviour.

  1. The Horsham Times, Victoria, 26 April 1898

 

Anne Zahalka (b. Australia 1957) 'Saturday 5.18 pm 1995' 1995 (printed 1997)

 

Anne Zahalka (Australian, b. 1957)
Saturday 5.18 pm 1995
1995 (printed 1997)
Type C photograph (ed AP)
125.0 x 162.0cm
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney Gift of the artist, 2011
Donated through the Australian Government’s Cultural Gifts Program

 

 

Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery
Civic Reserve, Dunns Road, Mornington

Opening hours:
Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm

Mornington Peninsula Regional Art Gallery website

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Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His art work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes Art Blart, an art and cultural memory archive, which posts mainly photography exhibitions from around the world. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne, a Master of Arts (Fine Art Photography) from RMIT University, and a Master of Art Curatorship from the University of Melbourne.

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Marcus Bunyan black and white archive: ‘Orphans and small groups’ 1994-96 Part 2

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