John CASTLE-HARRIS, Koalas Enlarge 1 /4
  1. 38028.jpg 1/4
  2. 38028_a.jpg 2/4
  3. 38028_b.jpg 3/4
  4. 38028_c.jpg 4/4


Waratah, New South Wales, Australia 1893 – Wahroonga, New South Wales, Australia 1967

13 May, 1893 – 7 April, 1967

Koalas [Model of a koala bear] 1938 Place made: Lawson, New South Wales, Australia
Materials & Technique: ceramics, hand-modelled earthenware, glazed

Primary Insc: signed and dated on base, incised: "Castle-/Harris/ 1938".
Dimensions: 24.5 h x 32.7 w x 20.7 d cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 1984
Accession No: NGA 84.680.17

Australia's fauna, particularly its unique marsupials, was co-opted into the service of Federation by numerous artists, sculptors and designers. The earnest seriousness of these depictions in the early years of the century gave way, from the 1920s, to naturalistic interpretations of these animals, often emphasising their quirkier characteristics, as in Koala bears 1938 by the potter John Castle-Harris, who was known for his exuberant ceramic menagerie.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra