Prolific artist Samuel Thomas Gill (1818–1880) is represented in the Trevor Kennedy Collection with watercolour works showing the Victorian goldfields and the earliest known depiction of the interior of an Australian house.
Early Sydney house
ST Gill's works are an extraordinary record of one of the most prosperous, diverse and energetic periods in Australian history. In 1857, Henri Noufflard, a French wool merchant, commissioned Gill to produce a series of watercolours of his home in Bligh Street, Sydney. The works are the earliest known depictions of the interior of an Australian house.
These works remained in the possession of the Noufflard family in France, unknown and undocumented, until they were sold in Sydney in 1983.
The pencil and watercolour works have been heightened with Chinese wine.
No artist captured the character of the Victorian goldfields as well as ST Gill. He depicted the hard-working miners and their families, the bustling streets of growing towns, raucous concerts and, as seen here, Victoria’s first Chinese restaurant.