Art and Design

Architecture

The Bridge: the arch that cut the sky

The journey to build the Sydney Harbour Bridge would take almost 100 years. In this 5-part series, travel through history to experience the story of realising a city’s dream. 

Architecture: arrival of modernism

Architectural modernism was a revolutionary rejection of past styles and the use of architectural ornament.

Architect of the screen: Eric Thompson as architect, artist and filmmaker

Eric Thompson’s career as an architect, artist and filmmaker highlights the close connection between architecture and design in the development of the film industry.

Harry Seidler collection

Designs and photographs from Australia's best known modernist architect.

Decoration and Glass magazine

Decoration and Glass, a magazine for home builders, architects and decorators has been digitised in colour as part of the Library’s Digital Excellence Program. 

Francis Greenway: convict architect

Francis Greenway (1777- 1837) produced some of the finest colonial buildings in Australia.

The Garden Palace

Sydney’s Garden Palace was a magnificent building with a grandeur that dominated the skyline and captivated society from its opening in 1879. Three years later it was destroyed in a devastating fire.

Architecture: nineteenth-century Sydney

Convict architect Francis Greenway was convinced of the importance of architecture to the development of early Sydney.

Drawings and paintings

A fully rounded masterpiece 

In difficult times, Australian expatriate artist George Lambert challenged himself to paint a distorted reflection. 

Mr Archimedes Moves In

The Library is the new home of award-winning children’s author and illustrator Pamela Allen’s extensive archive.

Art of Newcastle: convict artists in Aboriginal Country

An Aboriginal leader’s assistance to the artists of the Newcastle penal settlement led to an unprecedented visual record of the local Indigenous people.

The Wallis album

The discovery and acquisition of a fascinating album compiled by Captain James Wallis reveals the artistic collaborations between a commandant and a convict.

The TAL & Dai-ichi Life Derby Collection

This extraordinary collection of natural history illustrations contains 745 watercolours in six volumes, the collection conveys Europe’s naïve yet genuine sense of wonder at Australia’s unique natural history.

Convict artists in the time of Governor Macquarie

Many used their art to record and interpret the landscape and people of the early settlement.

Stories in the sun

The Library holds vast collections on Australian children’s book publishing in the ‘golden age’ of the 1970s and 80s.

Conrad Martens and George Edwards Peacock: Sydney artists

Artists have always been attracted to the natural beauty of Sydney Harbour and its foreshores.

Graphic design

A nice little business: NSW’s circulating libraries

Part of daily life in the mid twentieth century, circulating libraries have left charming traces.

Love is all: Myles Dunphy and romance

The well-known conservationist Myles Dunphy’s romantic side is beautifully illustrated in a new acquisition.

We tell the world: signwriting, decorating and Althouse & Geiger

The Library’s collection offers glimpses into Sydney signwriting and decorating firm Althouse & Geiger that once boasted, 'We tell the world everything it wants to know'.

Electric image: 1980s poster art and one Sydney band

An eye-catching poster got the message out for an emerging Sydney band in 1980.

Everything: a 1980s anarchist-feminist magazine

A feminist newspaper from the early 1980s brings back memories of lively co-op meetings, nutritious sandwiches and high ideals.

Mythical country: Vietnam in 1950s posters

Looking through Vietnamese art posters collected in the 1950s elicits complicated feelings all these years later.

Australian Inspiration

This is the story of Julie Paterson, one of Australia’s best known contemporary textile designers, and her design journey of drawing inspiration from the collection.

 

Endgame

Hundreds of delightful and intriguing endpapers can be found in the State Library of NSW collection.