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Augustus Earle

Natives of New South Wales in the Streets of Sydney - 1830

hand coloured lithograph
20.5 x 29.0 cm
Price Realised: $2,684.00

MP #405


Printed by C. Hullmandel and published by J. Cross, London 1830
Purchased by the current owner from antiquarian book seller in London in 2012
Private Collection, Vic

Artwork 20.5 x 29 cm : Frame 38.5 x 47 cm

Augustus Earle was born in London in 1793 and received his artistic training in London's Royal Academy where he exhibited from the age of 13 through his teenage years. In 1815, at the age of twenty-two, he visited Sicily, Malta, Gibraltar and North Africa, before returning to England in 1817. A portfolio of drawings from this voyage is held by the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra.


In March 1818, Earle left England on a journey that would take him around the world. After leaving Rio de Janeiro he spent 8 months stranded on the remote island of Tristan da Cunha, before being rescued and carried to Tasmania. Upon his arrival in Sydney he quickly established a reputation as the colony's first & foremost artist of significance. He set up a small business and received a number of requests for portraits from Sydney's establishment figures & leading families. Throughout this time, he also painted landscapes, Aboriginal subjects, and a series of views of public and private buildings that record the development of the colony.

During his time in Australia Earle made several excursions to outlying areas of the colony, travelling north of Sydney via the Hunter River as far as Port Stephens and Port Macquarie and south to the Illawarra.

Earle lived in Sydney from 1825 to 1828, punctuated by a seven-month side journey to New Zealand in 1828. An inveterate traveller, he is noted for being ‘the first independent, professionally trained artist to visit each of the five continents and record his experiences. This lithograph is among the most significant images produced during the early colonial years of Sydney. It was actually printed later in London after Earle’s return and bears a number of minor alterations from the original.