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Title

Bondi Beach, Sydney


Artist

Henry King

Australia

1855 - 1923


About

King’s success as a photographer eventually enabled him to build a large house in Bondi, with the beach a few streets away. Beach culture in the 19th century, however, was considerably different from today and the beach had not really established itself as an iconic part of the ‘Australian way of life’. Henry Burn’s ‘Brighton Beach’ 1862 is one of the earliest depictions of Australians by the sea. King probably took this charming photograph on the weekend, with the beach crowded. Yet the crowd is strolling and taking in the air, not swimming. A few have dared to take off their boots and paddle. The odd naked child ventures into the water. They probably escaped the daylight prohibition on bathing, which was in force in New South Wales until 1902.

© Art Gallery of New South Wales Photography Collection Handbook, 2007


Details


Date

circa 1889-1894


Media category

Photograph


Materials used

albumen photograph


Dimensions

14.9 x 20.1 cm image/sheet


Signature & date

Signed l.r. [inscribed on glass plate negative] "...(H. King Syd.). Not dated.


Credit

Gift of Paul Mallard 1987


Location

Not on display


Accession number

503.1987


Artist information

Henry King

Works in the collection

17


Shown in 4 exhibitions

Exhibition history


Referenced in 2 publications

Bibliography


Jorge Calado, À Prova de Água Waterproof, Lisbon, 1998, (illus.). plate no. 142

Steven Miller, Photography: Art Gallery of New South Wales Collection, 'In every house, and in every tent', pg.33-51, Sydney, 2007, 45 (illus.).