Caught and Coloured: Zoology Illustrations from Colonial Victoria




The Artists

A succession of artists and lithographers were engaged by Frederick McCoy to create the plates for his Zoology of Victoria.

Each brought individual vision and expertise, while working within strict taxonomically-driven parameters. Most were freelance, picking up a variety of commissions in the turbulent economic conditions that swept the colony in the last half of the 19th century.

Australia's geographic isolation was experienced by each artist as they journeyed by sea to their new home. They shared a fascination with the creatures they encountered that is palpable in their illustrations, their attention to detail inviting us into the moment when the animals were first observed.


Various illustrations by Arthur Bartholomew.