Intercolonial and international exhibitions

People, exhibits and prizewinners at key intercolonial and international exhibitions 1854-1889, and the buildings that housed Victorian exhibitions.

Melbourne. Victorian Exhibition 1861

This exhibition was, as the name implies, almost exclusively Victorian. It was organised to collect together articles of produce and manufacture so worthy items could be selected for display at the London International Exhibition the following year. The exhibition opened on 1 October 1861 and closed on 29 November 1861.

Online resources

Catalogue of the Victorian Exhibition, 1861: with prefatory essays indicating the progress, resources and physical characteristics of the colony 
The essays take up the first two thirds of the catalogue. The listing of exhibitors starts on page 215 and awards of the jurors on page 279. Within each class exhibitors are listed alphabetically by surname. There is no separate listing for fine arts; the newspaper article below indicates that it was not made clear to artists that their work could be included, so there were few exhibits for the arts.

Photographs of Melbourne and country towns by Cox and Luckin, Davies and Co., Jean-Baptiste Charlier and Edward Haigh were exhibited.

Newspaper reports

Description of the exhibition and the opening ceremony, The Argus, 2 October 1861.

Victorian Exhibition, The Age, 2 October 1861.

For New South Wales exhibits see the Catalogue of the natural and industrial products of New South Wales. This catalogue does not have a table of contents. It is divided into a number of sections:
Indigenous woods:  pages 17-34
Vegetable products:  pages 35-40
Animal products:  pages 40-42
Mineral products:  pages 43-60
Arts, Manufactures and Miscellaneous:  pages 44-64
These are preceded by some introductory essays which finish on page 16.

Catalogue of the natural and industrial products of Queensland. This catalogue does not have a table of contents. It is divided into a three main sections:
Introduction:  pages 1-14
Specimens of woods indigenous to Queensland:  pages 15-36
Other products:  pages 37-48  (exhibitors named)

Official catalogue of the Fine Art Department
Class 37.  Architecture
Class 38.  Paintings in oil and water colours, and drawings.
Class 38A.  Art designs for manufactures.
Class 39.  Sculpture, models, die-sinking, and intaglios.
Class 40.  Etchings and engravings.

The popular guide to the International Exhibition of 1862
Pages 115 to 122 give a brief overview of main exhibits from each of the states. For example, there is a description of the tall pyramid 44 feet, 9 and a quarter inches high and 10 feet square at the base representing gold exported from Victoria over 10 years. There is much enthusiasm over the New South Wales exhibit of llamas & alpacas.

The Australasian colonies at the International Exhibition, London, 1862: extracts from the reports of the jurors and other information taken from official sources
General description and comments about exhibits from each state, some individuals named in context but no listing of names.

Resources at the Library

Reports by the juries on the subjects in the thirty-six classes into which the exhibition was divided
A large volume arranged by classes into which the exhibits were divided. Each class begins with the judges' general overview and comments, followed by a listing of exhibitors from every country who won awards. The report for each class has its own pagination. There is a comprehensive alphabetical index at the back which includes award winners with reference to the class (in Roman numerals) and the page number within the section for the listing.

London. International Exhibition 1862

The London Exhibition was held from 1 May to 15 November 1862. There were exhibits from Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia, Queensland, Tasmania, and Western Australia. There were separate catalogues and booklets produced by some of the colonies for this exhibition.

Online resources

Prizewinners from Victoria can only be found in International Exhibition of 1862: awards of the jurors. Winners are listed by class (category of exhibit).

A four page pamphlet lists the space occupied by each type of display from Victoria: International Exhibition, 1862: particulars of space occupied by the various products and articles exhibited by the Commissioners for Victoria

Images of the London International Exhibition

Coloured watercolour drawing, International Exhibition, Hyde Park, London, 1862: showing Victorian Section with pillar of gold, Pictures collection

International Exhibition, Hyde Park, London, 1862: showing Victorian Section with pillar of gold, H5247

Photos of the exhibition taken by the London Stereophonic & Photographic Company are available to view on the Library catalogue.