FRIENDS FREE FLOOR TALK
Timber in colonial Tasmania
The nineteenth century is often known as the ‘age of iron’, however it was just as much, if not more so, an ‘age of wood’. This is an era when the use of timber accelerated with the resources made available by colonisation and the rapid expansion of demand for consumer goods such as furniture.
Colonisation brought the discovery of different species of trees and the unique structural and decorative properties of their timbers. The quality of tools also improved and furniture types proliferated. Within this massive global network of timber trade dominated by northern hemisphere resources such as those of North America and Cuba, the remote colony of Van Diemen’s Land developed a unique relationship to its local timber resources, particularly in relation to furniture production.
There was both an economic imperative to exploit the resource to gain recognition within the British Empire and a burgeoning pride to the island’s uniqueness.
TMAG’s Senior Curator (Decorative Arts) Peter Hughes will speak on this topic and will show images of some of the magnificent pieces in TMAG’s collection of colonial furniture.
This is a FREE EVENT and you are welcome to bring non-member friends.
Maker unknown (Tasmania), Exhibition table, 1830s, Wood (Huon pine, Australian cedar secondary Huon pine veneer, blackwood veneer, unidentified eucalypt veneer); metal (proprietary steel and brass fittings), 74.5 x 98 x 98 cm, Mona State Collection of the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery collected by Mr George Burrows, 2006, P2006.49