Gould’s Sketchbook of fishes

William Buelow Gould’s Sketchbook of fishes, in the collection of the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts, was created by this convict artist while he was incarcerated on Sarah Island on Tasmania’s west coast in 1832.

In 2011 it was recognised as a document of world significance. It is now on the UNESCO Australian Memory of the World Register. The work also inspired Tasmanian author Richard Flanagan to write his novel, Gould’s Book of Fish: a novel in twelve fish, published in 2001.

The sketchbook contains thirty-six watercolour paintings by Gould and can be viewed online.

William Buelow Gould: the convict artist

William Buelow Gould (c1801-1853) was transported to Van Diemen’s Land in 1827. While under sentence at Macquarie Harbour he was instructed to paint botanical and fish species.

Gould’s art

A Tasmanian curriculum resource

In 2016, ‘That celebrated & eccentric genius, Gould : a Tasmanian integrated curriculum resource for years 5 and 6’ was published. It features the life of the convict, William Beulow Gould.

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