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  • Title
    Portraits of Emily and Isabel Macpherson, 187-
  • Level of description
  • Date

    ca 187-
  • Type of material
  • Reference code
  • Issue Copy
  • Physical Description
    2 paintings - oil - visible image 75.5 x 58.5 cm, in frame 93.5 x 76.0 cm

    Emily Mary Macpherson (1863-1936) was the fifth daughter of John Macpherson (1829-1915) and Elizabeth, nee Macdonald (1832-1894). Emily married Frederic Moore, a draughtsman, who was the third son of Lewis Moore of Tramore, Manly, in December 1887. She was the mother of artist and architect John D. Moore (1888-1958), whose son was the photographer David Moore (1927-2003).

    Isabel Elizabeth Macpherson (1867-1942), her sister, married Robert Aiken, a flour miller, in December 1892. She was the N.S.W. Associate Golf Champion in 1910.

    Emily and Isabel's father, John Macpherson (1829-1915), was head of the Sydney firm Holdsworth, Macpherson, and Co.. He served as an alderman and mayor of Waverley Council, was a member of the Water and Sewerage Board, and president of the board of directors of the Randwick Asylum. He married Elizabeth Macdonald in 1850, and together they had 13 children.

    The Sydney Morning Herald, 3 December 1887, 12 December, 1892, 24 November 1915, 18 March 1936, and 1 December 1942.
    Library correspondence file
  • Collection history
    By family descent until 2006. Reference: (accessed 21 September 2010)
  • Scope and Content
    Two framed oil portraits on paper, mounted on canvas, in original wood veneer frames.

    ITEM 01
    Portrait of Emily Macpherson, 187-

    ITEM 02
    Portrait of Isabel Macpherson, 187-

  • Collection history
    By family descent until 2006. Reference: (accessed 21 September 2010)
  • Source
    Purchased from Bridget McDonnell Gallery, June 2010
  • General note

    A Sydney newspaper in 1879 describes Chinese agents who produced portraits in oil from small photographs or cartes-de-visites at the Sydney Central Provision markets. The photographs were forwarded by post to China to be painted by local artists. One such company was The Chinese and Oriental Photographic & Oil Portrait Co. in George Street, Sydney.

    The partial inscription on the backs of the portraits has been identified by a librarian in the State Library of New South Wales (June 2010) as possibly being of the Chinese painter Youqua. Youqua was active around the mid-19th century. He may well have executed portraits from life or daguerreotypes though no examples of this type of work have been identified. Youqua and other artists worked with lesser painters, apprentices or studios to fufil the large number of works demanded for export.

    The mechanical eye in Australia : photography 1841-1900 / Alan Davies & Peter Stanbury ; with assistance from Con Tanre. Melbourne : Oxford University Press, 1985.
    The decorative arts of the China trade : paintings, furnishings, and exotic curiosities / Carl L. Crossman. Woodbridge, Suffolk : Antique Collectors' Club, 1991.
    Library correspondence file
    Digital order no:Album ID : 949495
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