J. W. Lindt
'Mourners and dead house at Kalo, New Guinea' 1885
Johannes Lindt emigrated to Australia from Germany in 1862. He took up photography in Grafton, New South Wales, where he made his reputation in 1873 with a series of studio portraits of local Indigenous people. Lindt was, however, more interested in New Guinea than in Australia -- a fascination dating from 1868 when he travelled home from a trip to Europe via the Torres Strait. Following the proclamation of an Australian protectorate over part of south-east New Guinea in 1884, Lindt secured passage as a voluntary member of the expedition of Sir Peter Scratchley, Special Commissioner for Great Britain in New Guinea.
In 1887 Lindt published a book on his trip -- Picturesque New Guinea. With an historical introduction and supplementary chapters on the manners and customs of the Papuans -- illustrated with fifty photomechanical prints. It was a great success and became a first introduction to New Guinea for many general readers.
Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra 2010
From: Ron Radford (ed), Collection highlights: National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 2008