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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.

Sir George Ferguson Bowen, c. 1873

Bardwell's Royal Studio

carte de visite photograph (support: 10.5 cm x 6.4 cm, image: 9.2 cm x 5.8 cm)

More images of this artwork

Photographer William Bardwell worked in Ballarat from 1858 until 1895. Initially in partnership with Saul Solomon, he specialised in portraits and views, examples of which were exhibited in the Geelong Industrial Exhibition in 1862 and the 1863 Ballarat Mechanics’ Institute Exhibition. In 1866, Bardwell established the Royal Photographic Studio independently of Solomon, one newspaper announcing that the new studio was ‘in every way replete with suitable accommodation … and rooms are provided for both ladies and gentlemen.’ Bardwell took advantage of his studio’s close proximity to the Theatre Royal, producing photographs for visiting theatre groups and opera companies and for those on the variety and sideshow circuits. Boasting the ‘best appointed Studio in the colonies’, Bardwell also provided portraits for prominent citizens and from 1868, having presented a set of views of Ballarat to Prince Alfred, advertised himself as photographer ‘By Special Appointment to HRH the Duke of Edinburgh.’ Bardwell went into partnership with John Beauchamp for some part of 1878 before relocating to Melbourne later that year. Bardwell’s Royal Studios at Ballarat remained active, however, throughout the 1880s under the management of a Mr Williams.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Graham Smith 2009

Accession number: 2009.78

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Bardwell's Royal Studio

Sir George Ferguson Bowen GCMG (age 52 in 1873)

Subject professions

Government and leadership

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.

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The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery

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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.