An image of Seeking for gold - cradling

Walter Withers

(Australia 1854 – 1914)

Seeking for gold - cradling

Other titles:
Gold fossicking, Cradling, The gold puddlers, Gold fossickers
Location
19th c Australian art
Further information

'Seeking for gold - cradling' is a heroic depiction of the Australian worker and landscape. It presents two men fossicking for gold in a stream, saturated in brilliant sunlight. Each man is using a gold cradle - a box on inclined rockers containing metal sieves, which was moved by hand to process soil, capturing gold in the base of the cradle.

After arriving in Melbourne in 1883, English-born Walter Withers continued his studies at the National Gallery School. He became a central member of the Heidelberg group of artists and was a strong advocate of plein-air painting. In January 1893 Withers held outdoor painting classes in the gold mining town of Creswick, Victoria. Here he painted landscape and mining subjects including 'Seeking for gold - cradling', demonstrating his affinity with the Australian landscape. Other related works by Withers are held in the National Gallery of Australia and the City of Ballarat Fine Art Gallery.

Place of origin
Creswick, Victoria, Australia
Year
1893
Media
Painting
Medium
oil on canvas on hardboard
Dimensions
67.0 x 49.6 cm board (irreg.); 95.1 x 77.2 cm frame
Signature & date
Signed and dated l.l., brown oil "Walter Withers/ 93".
Credit
Gift of the Australian Securities Exchange 2012
Accession number
235.2012