The current display in their Treasure Wall features the aspects of Art and Nature. One of the major strengths of the State Library collections is its early Australiana. This includes rare early depictions of Australian flora and fauna, as well as many original works by Australian artists.
While browsing through the displays it is apparent that beautiful large folios and volumes of work have been carefully preserved. It is interesting to note that in some cases the illustrators never actually saw the items in life that they represent but are using previous sketches and specimens brought back from Australia.
Mark, Curator of the current Treasure's Wall exhibition preparing for the exhibition
Illustrators from Australia's earliest settlement were given the task of capturing the most vivid and unusual of Australia's flora and fauna in exquisite detail. The fishes and birds in particular are beautifully presented and coloured. Overall it might enhance the exhibition to have some real Australian flora on view. For example some vases of bottlebrushes, wattles and hakeas. Hakeas flower around our Autumn. The scent and uniqueness of these plants would make this more than a behind glass experience. Especially for overseas visitors who may not have observed the real thing.
This exhibition showcases published works of John Gould, Charles Lesueur and George Perry, alongside detailed artwork by Rosa Fiveash, William Webster Hoare and Commander James Emery. Art of Nature, includes a selection of botanical, fish, bird and fauna depictions and is on display in the State Library Treasures Wall until March 31st.