Our future was ours: Darren Sylvester loan to the National Gallery of Victoria

Our future was ours, a lightjet print made in 2005 by Melbourne artist Darren Sylvester was condition reported this week in preparation for its loan to the National Gallery of Victoria. The work of art will be featured in the artist’s first large-scale solo exhibition titled Darren Sylvester: Carve a Future, Devour Everything, Become Something shown at Federation Square from the 1st of March until 30th June 2019.

Conservator from the National Gallery of Victoria condition reporting Darren Sylvester's "Our future was ours"
Conservator from the National Gallery of Victoria condition reporting Darren Sylvester’s “Our future was ours”

The scene depicted in the print was staged and photographed inside the Baillieu Library. Our future was ours was purchased for the building in 2009 by the then University Librarian, Philip Kent, to mark the 50th anniversary of the Baillieu. It’s exhibition now in 2019 coincides perfectly with the Baillieu Library’s 60th anniversary.


News of the Popish plot

Dr McIlvenna performing an execution ballad from the Popish plot pamphlets.
Dr McIlvenna performing an execution ballad from the Popish plot pamphlets.

The 2019 object-based learning program created a headline through the Popish plot pamphlets which amazed students in the summer intensive course: The History of News from Street Ballads to Social Media. The Popish plot pamphlets are a compilation of bound printed items such as speeches, broadsides, poems, plays and ballads which are titled after the first publication in the volume: A true narrative of the late design of the papists to charge their horrid plot upon the Protestants (1679). Many brutal wars and plots took place across Europe between the Catholics and the Protestants after the Protestant Reformation was set in motion in 1517. It is a powerful and sobering experience to behold these pamphlets which are a physical record of religiopolitical terrorism. Plots such as those in 17th century England including this scheme to assassinate the Protestant King Charles II, had in other instances such as in France, resulted in the St Bartholomew’s Day massacre in which thousands of Protestants were savagely slain. The Popish plot, however, was later revealed to be a fictitious conspiracy invented by the priest Titus Oates, but not before alleged ‘papist plotters’ had been grimly executed.

Continue reading “News of the Popish plot”


Faithful and frightening: The Renaissance imagination explored

A post by Mary Henkel who is an undergraduate student at the University of Melbourne studying Art History.

Enea Vico, St. George Killing the Dragon (1542), engraving after Giulio Clovio
Enea Vico, St. George Killing the Dragon (1542), engraving after Giulio Clovio

Continue reading “Faithful and frightening: The Renaissance imagination explored”



Life imitates art: The Three Graces (1776)

From painting, to print, to pic

Thomas Waston after Joshua Reynolds, "The Three Graces Decorating a Terminal Figure of Hymen", 1776.
Thomas Waston after Joshua Reynolds, “The Three Graces Decorating a Terminal Figure of Hymen”, 1776.

The Three Graces, housed in the Print Collection, is a 1776 print by Thomas Watson (1750-1781) after a 1773 painting by Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792). The large print was created using the mezzotint method. Mezzotint involves scraping and polishing the surface of a copper or steel plate engraving to create different tones with both soft shades and rich blacks. This technique was used often in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries for the reproduction of paintings, particularly portraits. The original painting was titled Three Ladies Adorning a Term of Hymen and it was commissioned by the politician Luke Gardiner, who was engaged to Elizabeth Montgomery, one of the three women depicted. Currently, it is part of the Tate collection.

Continue reading “Life imitates art: The Three Graces (1776)”


Number of posts found: 189

Popular posts

  • Loading...

Previous posts

Post type