Newland, J. W.

Maitland : 1848

Newland is described by the Design and Art Australia Online website as a travelling photographer and showman who exhibited his daguerreotype's both nationally and internationally and is renowned for his portraits and panoramic works.[1]  “When the travelling daguerreotype collection was lavishly praised in the Sydney Morning Herald on 14 March 1848, the photographers were identified as the Messrs Newland 'who have just arrived from London to work in Sydney’.” [2]

Inhabitants of Newcastle and Maitland were respectfully informed by J.W. Newland in July 1848 that “…his gallery will be open for a few days at the end of this present month, for the purpose of taking Daguerreotype Likenesses, in the last most improved style.”  [3]

Newland’s arrival in Maitland is announced on 29 July 1848, his location being the Northumberland Hotel. Mr. Newland  advises  he is ready to take coloured Daguerreotype likenesses, also exhibiting his “…much admired DISSOLVING VIEWS, as shown at the Royal Polytechnic and Adelaide Galleries, London, and at the Royal Victoria Theatre, Sydney.”[4] The Exhibition of Dissolving Views was reported by the Maitland Mercury in great detail:

On Monday evening, at the Northumberland Hotel, Mr. Newland gave his first exhibition of dissolving views and chromatropes, and of objects shown by the oxy-hydrogen microscope. Seventeen views and three chromatropes were first given...the first and third chromatrope were also very beautiful, and of most dazzling effect. The whole of these scenes, as well as the displays which followed, were thrown on a screen of prepared linen, placed upright at one end of the room, and occupying its whole height and nearly its breadth…we can assure our readers that if they attend they will not leave disappointed. [5]

 Advertising again in August:

J.W. NEWLAND begs most respectfully to inform the inhabitants of Maitland
and its vicinity that he is NOW READY to receive SITTERS at his Room, “
Northumberland Hotel.” Persons wishing to procure LIEKNESSES of themselves
and families would do well to avail themselves of this opportunity as early as
possible as Mr. N. will only remain until Monday, 21st August, when he will be
positively leave for Newcastle.

Later he established a studio in Calcutta in about 1850 and although his studio remained successful throughout the 1850s, Newland himself died in 1857, one of the early victims of the Indian Mutiny.[7]

Only one Australian portrait by Newland is known (it is a rare example of daguerreotype stamped with the photographer's name) of E.T.Y. McDonald, publican of Sydney. [8]
This photograph can be viewed on the website of the Macleay Museum, University of Sydney.[9]



[3] Sydney Morning Herald, 4 July 1848

[4] Maitland Mercury, 29 July, 1848

[5] Maitland Mercury, 9 August 1848

[6] Maitland Mercury, 12 August 1848

[7] British Library, Daguerreotype

[8] Shades of Light. Based on text from the original book: Shades of Light: Photography and Australia 1839-1988, Gael Newton, Australian National Gallery, 1988.