New South Wales. View of Sydney from the West Side of the Cove No. 1 and View of Sydney from the West Side of the Cove No. 2.

London: John Booth Duke Street Portland Place, June 4th. 1810.

Pair of uncoloured aquatints jolined as a panorama as intended, 340 x 980 mm; in the original bird's-eye maple frame.

The first panoramic views

A rare panorama of Sydney Harbour. John Eyre arrived in New South Wales in 1801, transported here for 7 years for housebreaking. The first of his drawings which can be dated was done in 1804 soon after he received his conditional pardon. His best known work is this majestic panorama; the Sydney he portrays (fancifully) is a neat and orderly town where the Aboriginal inhabitants live with dignity and "peace, order and good government reign..." (The Antipodes Observed, 64). The focus is very much on the Harbour where the maritime activity was the dominating element in Sydney at the time. Eyre produced four images:two views from the West side of the Cove and two from the East; offered here are the two views from the West.

A rare panorama of Sydney Harbour. John Eyre arrived in New South Wales in 1801, transported here for 7 years for housebreaking. The first of his drawings which can be dated was done in 1804 soon after he received his conditional pardon. His best known work is this majestic panorama; the Sydney he portrays (fancifully) is a neat and orderly town where the Aboriginal inhabitants live with dignity and "peace, order and good government reign..." (The Antipodes Observed, 64). The focus is very much on the Harbour where the maritime activity was the dominating element in Sydney at the time. Eyre produced four images:two views from the West side of the Cove and two from the East; offered here are the two views from the West.

Eyre's painted panorama was exhibited in London in 1810 and the aquatint engravings were published soon after. The original paintings had been taken back to England by David Dickenson Mann, also a convict, who had been transported to Australia in 1799 for forgery. He was pardoned by 1802 and stayed in Australia, on the fringes of government service until 1809 when he returned to England on the same ship as Colonel Johnston. In fact, Mann was one of the men who gave evidence at the famous court martial of 1811 of George Johnston.

Mann not only took back to England the four oil paintings by John Eyre, he arranged for the exhibition of the paintings in London in 1810, then organised their publication. They have the distinction of forming the first such panorama of Sydney to be shown in London and also the first to be published.

First Views of Australia, pp. 130-131.

Price (AUD): $17,500.00  other currencies     Ref: #4202818

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