Podcast

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Welcome to the Portrait Detective podcast

Listen to the series here:

 

Episode 06 Parramatta’s fashionable lady, 1865

Was Governor Bligh’s colonial regime brought to its knees by a fracas over his daughter’s undergarments? And how does this relate to a photograph of a fashionably dressed young woman taken in Parramatta in 1865? All will be revealed as Margot Riley and Cassie Gilmartin discuss the industrial advances of the 1860s and the huge impact these had on women’s fashion. 

And here’s the image we’re discussing:

 

Episode 05 Sydney’s accidental celebrity: James Johnson, 1857

James Johnson, the only survivor of the 1857 Dunbar shipwreck, was so fascinating to Sydneysiders that he was chased down the city’s streets. It was a tough time for this shy young man from Ireland who simply loved the sea. Margot and Cassie discuss the portrait that made him instantly recognisable, and discover how James ended his days in the colony.

And here’s the image we’re discussing:

 

Episode 04 Two sisters, the mutiny and a happy snap from 1857: The Nobbs sisters, Norfolk Island

Who were the Nobbs sisters? And what is their link to the famous mutiny on the Bounty? Margot Riley and Cassie Gilmartin delve into the history behind this early ‘happy snap’ to see what we can learn about 19th-century life on Pitcairn and Norfolk Islands and the evidence revealed by the sisters’ clothing. 

And here’s the image we’re discussing:

 

Episode 03 The rare family portrait from 1854: George Walker Johnson and his young family

Amid the chaos and change of a tumultuous decade in Australian history, George Walker Johnson and his family pose for an extremely poignant portrait. Margot Riley and Cassie Gilmartin discuss the story behind this rare daguerreotype and what we can glean from our own family photographs. 

And here’s the image we’re discussing:

Here is the same family photographed c.1885 (with a few more children since the first portrait!)

 

Episode 02 The selfie that’s 184 years old: Mary Ellen Betts, 1837

In 1837, a genteel young woman named Mary Ellen Betts decides to paint a self-portrait. Who was she, what can we learn from this painting, and why is it so significant to our understanding of life in the early 1800s?

And here’s the image we’re discussing:

 

 

Episode 01 Convicts, colonials and the mysterious green umbrella: The costume of the Australasians, 1817

An iconic watercolour drawing from 1817 by artist Edward Close records a unique view of a street scene in colonial Sydney, showing the clothing that early settlers would have seen and worn in daily life. Margot Riley and Cassie Gilmartin discuss the significance of this portrait and solve the puzzle of the green silk umbrella. 

And here’s the image we’re discussing:

 

 

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Podcast launching 1 March 2021

Portrait Detective is new podcast series brought to you by State Library of NSW, Create NSW and Essex Street Media. Series 1 of Portrait Detective dives into the collections of the State Library to discover the stories behind iconic portraits from 1817 to 1865. Join Margot Riley and Cassie Gilmartin as they journey back in time to discuss each portrait’s significance and how they can help you learn more about your own photographs in your family history collection. Launching 1 March 2021 where you download all good podcasts.

 

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