Summary

This undated pencil sketch on paper is the only known work by the nineteenth century Wurundjeri man 'Timothy', a resident at Coranderrk. His Aboriginal name was recorded as Koorook-koonong in the 1863 census taken at Coranderrk, the year the Aboriginal Station was founded near Healesville. Charles Walter took Timothy's portrait a few years later at Coranderrk and the Walter's caption identifies him as 'Gurruk-coonim aged 34 years' and 'Son of the King (of the Yarra Tribe) and himself a King'.

Physical Description

Pencil sketch with four registers. It comprises 2 separate sheets of paper and the work is either two separate works or a single work on two sheets of paper glued to a single backing board. It comprises 7 scenes in total. Inscriptions in pencil on work: Timothy Coranderrk (front); and Original drawings by Natives of Victoria (reverse).

Significance

This pencil sketch was though to have been the only work known to have been produced by this man, however recent research by other scholars indicates that he may have produced other sketches. His work predates both Barak and McRae's work by at least a few decades, and the imagery has similarities with the work of both men. Tommy McRae's pen and ink sketches have multiple registers; and William Barak's corroboree paintings portray bearded men in the same way they are shown here. Hunting scenes were a common theme for McRae as well, and the one here shows a party of men with a dog hunting a kangaroo. Interesting Timothy has included himself in the imagery - a squatting or sitting figure to the left of the 'signature'. Charles Walter's photographic portrait of Timothy bears a striking resemblance to this figure and his suite of photographic portraits from Coranderrk were exhibited in the 1866 Intercolonial Exhibition in Melbourne. The most extraordinary element in this work however is the imagery in the top panel that appears to portray either an eclipse or some other lunar phenomenon.

More Information

  • Collecting Areas

    Australian Indigenous - South-eastern Australia

  • Maker

    Timothy

  • Date Produced

    1863 - 1875

  • Date Collected

    1863 - 1875

  • Locality

    Coranderrk, Port Phillip, Victoria, Australia

  • Medium

    Pencil

  • Technique

    Drawing

  • Support

    Paper

  • Object/Medium

    Drawing

  • Category

    Indigenous Collections

  • Discipline

    Anthropology

  • Type of item

    Object

  • Object Measurements

    895 mm (Length), 660 mm (Width), 45 mm (Height)

  • Frame

    657 mm (Width), 42 mm (Depth), 895 mm (Height)
    Taken by Conservation, 6 Jul 2021

  • Other Dimensions

    632 mm (Width), 867 mm (Height)
    Mount dimensions, taken by Conservation (6 Jul 2021). Appears to be a custom size.

  • Primary support

    481 mm (Width), 763 mm (Height)
    Taken by Conservation, 6 Jul 2021. Support is irregular.

  • References

    [Book] Museum Victoria. 2004. Treasures of the Museum. Victoria, Australia.

  • Keywords

    Art