C1784

A Man of Van Diemen’s Land. A Woman of Van Diemen’s Land.

Cook in the Resolution arrived at Adventure Bay (Bruny Island), Tasmania and remained from 24 January to 30 January 1777. They were astonished at the aborigines unashamed nakedness. Webber’s first painted version of the this male portrait included the man’s … Read Full Description

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Details

Full Title:

A Man of Van Diemen’s Land. A Woman of Van Diemen’s Land.

Date:

C1784

Condition:

In good condition, strong impressions with wide margins.

Technique:

Copper engraving.

Image Size: 

220mm 
x 285mm
AUTHENTICITY
A Man of Van Diemen's Land. A Woman of Van Diemen's Land. - Antique Print from 1784

Genuine antique
dated:

1784

Description:

Cook in the Resolution arrived at Adventure Bay (Bruny Island), Tasmania and remained from 24 January to 30 January 1777. They were astonished at the aborigines unashamed nakedness. Webber’s first painted version of the this male portrait included the man’s full torso, covered with ceremonial scars. Cook described the appearance of the Tasmanians as ‘far from disagreeable’. These portraits are the only ones that depict the Australian Aborigines in any of Cook’s three voyages and are the first known British contact with the Tasmanian Aborigines.

John Webber (1752 - 1793)

John Webber was an 18th century artist, best known for his work as the official artist on Captain James Cook's third and final voyage to the Pacific in 1776-1780. He was born in London, England in 1751 and was trained as an artist. Webber accompanied Cook on his voyage as the official artist, tasked with creating drawings and paintings of the places and people they encountered. He produced many illustrations and sketches that were used to make engravings for inclusion in the official account of the voyage, published after Cook's death. Webber was required to "give a more perfect idea thereof than can be formed by written description." Webber's illustrations and engravings of the Pacific islands and their inhabitants are considered some of the most accurate and detailed depictions of the region from that time. They provide an important record of the places and people encountered by Cook and his crew, and are valuable for understanding the culture and daily life of the people of the Pacific during the 18th century. He died in London in 1793, after having returned from the voyage, but his work continues to be recognised as an important historical record of the voyage and of the art of his time. Webber's oeuvre from the voyage was the most comprehensive record of sights in the Pacific region ever produced.

View other items by John Webber

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