(England, Australia 08 Mar 1856–14 Sep 1931)
Aboriginal head - Charlie Turner
- Other titles:
- Aboriginal head (Charlie Turner), Head of an Aboriginal, Aboriginal Head
- Not on display
- Further information
Tom Roberts made portraits of Aboriginal people as part of his broader project to record for posterity subjects that he regarded as being characteristic of Australian life. His focus here on the subject’s eyes was unusual among 19th-century depictions of Indigenous people for its poignant evocation of an inner life – at the time there was a widespread belief that Australia’s Indigenous people were a dying race.
This portrait may have been painted from studies Roberts made of Aboriginal people during his stay at Corowa in the Riverina in 1890–91. However, it is also possible that Roberts produced it during his 1892 visit to Cooktown, North Queensland, where he also sketched various local Indigenous people.
- Place of origin
New South Wales,
- oil on canvas on paperboard
- 39.4 x 29.8cm board; 53.9 x 44.4 x 6.5cm frame
- Signature & date
- Signed and dated l.l., brown oil "Tom Roberts./ 1892".
- Purchased 1892
- Accession number