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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

John Pascoe Fawkner, c. 1867

Batchelder & Co. Photo

albumen photograph on carte de visite (support: 10.5 cm x 6.3 cm)

More images of this artwork

John Pascoe Fawkner (1792–1869), sometimes called the ‘Founder of Melbourne’ was a pioneer and adventurer. The self-educated son of a convict, he spent his early years in Van Diemen’s Land, pursuing a variety of occupations from baker to builder to bush lawyer, often finding himself in trouble with the law largely because of debts but in 1814 for abetting an attempted escape by convicts. He launched the Launceston Advertiser in 1828 and edited it for the next two years, championing the emancipist class and attacking officialdom. In 1835 he organised an expedition to what is now Melbourne. Landing in Hobson’s Bay, Fawkner soon became a man of property and influence, acquired substantial lots of land, running a hotel and establishing the Port Phillip Patriot and Melbourne Advertiser. A member of the Legislative Council from its introduction in 1851 until his death, Fawkner railed in his Port Phillip Patriot against the privileged squattocracy and was known as ‘the tribune of the people’.

The Melbourne photographic firm Batchelder & Co. had originated from a business established on Collins Street in 1854 by Perez Mann Batchelder, a Boston-born daguerreotypist. Between 1857, when Perez Batchelder returned to the USA, and 1864 it traded as Batchelder & O’Neill – a partnership between Perez Batchelder’s brothers and another American, Daniel O’Neill. The studio was one of the first in Melbourne to offer cartes-de-visite and is said to have increased the format’s popularity by producing portraits of actors and other celebrities. By 1864 none of the Batchelders were involved in the original business. The Batchelder name, however, had become synonymous with photographic portraiture in Melbourne and when artists John Botterill, Frederick Dunn and John Wilson – having acquired ‘all the negatives and other portraits, the accumulation of over 11 years of Batchelder and O’Neill’s business’ – acquired the studio they continued to trade under it. During their management the studio was known as Batchelder’s Portrait Rooms and Batchelder & Co. The business changed hands again around 1880, but the Batchelder name was again retained until the studio’s eventual closure in the 1890s.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 2008

Accession number: 2008.71

Currently not on display

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Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill
Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill
Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill
Lady Barkly, 1863 Batchelder & O'Neill

Carte-o-mania!

Previous exhibition, 2018

Drawn from the NPG’s burgeoning collection of cartes de visite, Carte-o-mania! celebrates the wit, style and substance of the pocket-sized portraits that were taken and collected like crazy in post-goldrush Australia.

Ned Kelly death mask, date unknown an unknown artist after Maximilian Kreitmayer
Ned Kelly death mask, date unknown an unknown artist after Maximilian Kreitmayer
Ned Kelly death mask, date unknown an unknown artist after Maximilian Kreitmayer
Ned Kelly death mask, date unknown an unknown artist after Maximilian Kreitmayer

Sideshow Alley

Infamy, the macabre & the portrait

Previous exhibition, 2015

Death masks, post-mortem drawings and other spooky and disquieting portraits... Come and see how portraits of infamous Australians were used in the 19th century.

The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery

The Gallery

Explore portraiture and come face to face with Australian identity, history, culture, creativity and diversity.

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.