This project, supported by an Australian Research Council Discovery Grand, will investigate the cultural vision of the first Catholic Archbishop of Melbourne, James Goold (1812-1886), whose architectural patronage has left a permanent imprint on the built environment of Melbourne. An Irishman educated in Italy, Goold was a passionate collector and missionary bishop. The Bishop imported a library and late Italian Baroque paintings to convey the intensity of European religious experience. When Goold was appointed to Melbourne it was a provincial town, but with the discovery of gold and the commissioning of St Parick’s Cathedral Melbourne became an international metropolis.

A. McDonald, “Rt Revd. James. A. Goold, Lord Bishop of Melbourne”, photograph, 1870.

The project is a tripartite exercise, examining Goold’s collection and patronage in the fields of Art and Architecture, along with his extensive library of books which include the University of Melbourne Library’s twenty-seven elephant folio volumes of the work of Giovanni Battista Piranesi.

Readers of this blog can expect to find essays from the researchers, articles on the life and collecting of Goold, and news from the project as it continues.

Label from the verso of one of Archbishop Goold’s paintings