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Title

A view in Otaheite Peha

1785


Artist

John Webber

England

1751 - 1793


About

English painter John Webber was the official artist aboard Captain James Cook's HMS Resolution, which sailed throughout the Pacific Ocean in search of the North-West Passage between 1776-79. Webber had been enlisted by the British Admiralty to record their discoveries in works to be included in the publication A voyage to the Pacific Ocean 1784. Cook's momentous third voyage led to the European discovery of Hawaii in 1778 and culminated in his death shortly afterwards in 1779.

'A view in Otaheite Peha' was painted in England eight years after the Resolution landed in Tahiti in August 1777, probably using drawings or watercolours made during the expedition as a reference. It is one of two known paintings created by Webber depicting the same idyllic scene of villagers taking in the vista of mountainous Oheitepeha Bay. Its duplication can probably be attributed to there being a strong market for new-world subjects during this period of exploration and discovery.

The conservation treatment of this painting and frame was funded by Conservation Benefactors.


Details


Other Title

A view of Otaheite Pehu, one of the Society Islands, 1783


Date

1785


Media category

Painting


Materials used

oil on canvas


Dimensions

46.0 x 63.5 cm


Signature & date

Signed and dated upper c. verso on canvas, black oil ".../ John Webber ... 1785.".


Credit

Purchased 1976


Accession number

4.1976


Artist information

John Webber

Works in the collection

1


Shown in 1 exhibition

Exhibition history


Referenced in 2 publications

Bibliography


Amanda Beresford, Swiss artists in Australia 1777-1991, 'John Webber', pg.13-24, Sydney, 1991, 16, 21 (colour illus.), 109. cat.no. 11

Art Gallery of New South Wales catalogue of British paintings, Sydney, 1987, 209 (illus.).