We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.





Samuel Clifford


1827 – 1890

  • Details

    Media category
    Materials used
    carte de visite
    5.9 x 8.7 cm image; 6.2 x 10.3 cm mount card
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Purchased 2014
    Not on display
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Samuel Clifford

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Samuel Clifford was a professional photographer and grocer based in Tasmania. He made stereoscopic views of Tasmania that he sold, along with photographic equipment, at his Hobart grocery shop. In the early 1860s he opened his own studio, producing stereograph views of Tasmanian scenery until 1878 when his business was purchased by the Anson Brothers.

    A stereograph is a pair of photographs on a single support that, when viewed through a stereoscope, create the illusion of three-dimensionality. Taken with a dual-lens camera, the photographs exhibit very slight shifts in point of view to approximate human binocular vision. Viewing stereographs was a popular pastime from the mid 1850s to the 1930s.

    A carte de visite is a stiff card of about 10 x 6.4 cm, with an attached paper photograph, invented in 1854 by André-Adolphe-Eugène Disderi. They were introduced into Australia in 1859 by William Blackwood with albums arriving in 1860, aiding the collection and distribution of multiple cartes. Cartes were usually portraits and were made by the millions worldwide. Multi-lens, or ‘multiplying’ cameras were introduced in the 1860s, which were capable of producing from 2 to 32 images in quick succession, dramatically increasing the number of cartes de visite that could be made from a single photographic plate. They were easily reproduced by making paper contact prints from the glass plates, which were then cut and pasted to card.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 1 exhibition

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 1 publication

Other works by Samuel Clifford

See all 8 works