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A Larger View (By Another Artist) of That Celebrated Natural Curiosity, the Perforated Rock, in Tolaga Bay, in New Zealand

Artist/Maker: Gerald Sibelius (The Netherlands, 1734-1785)

Artist/Maker: Herman Diedrich Spöring (Finland, 1733-1771)

Date: 1784-1786
Medium: engraving
Sheet: 9 3/4 x 14 1/4 in. (24.8 x 36.2 cm)
Classification: Art Works
Credit Line: Gift of Drs. Ann and Robert Walzer
Object number: 2004.50.9.9
DescriptionThe other artist referred to in the title of this print is Herman Diedrich Spöring (ca. 1733-1771), the Swedish-born secretary who accompanied Banks on Cook’s first voyage. An amateur artist, Spöring made numerous drawings for Banks including a pencil sketch executed in October of 1769 at Tolaga Bay, New Zealand. Banks, whose primary interest was botany and documenting the flora and fauna of the Pacific, described the arched rock as, “… certainly the most magnificent surprise I have ever met with so much is pure nature superior to art in these cases.” Spöring’s image was re-drawn by others, including Parkinson, and in the original engraving by John James Barralet (Irish, 1747-1815) that appears in Hawkesworth, figures were added to enhance the landscape. A native figure wrapped in a cloth leads two European men along a path to the left. He faces the viewer, holding out his hand as if offering the natural wonder of New Zealand to the viewer. Another Maori man walks along the opposite shore carrying a long fishing spear, while the Endeavor’s pinnace can be seen sailing in the bay. Barralet’s inclusion of figures in this unusual landscape served not only as a visual aid to better describe the grandeur of the sublime perforated rock, but also as an indicator of the perceived status of the relationship between the British and the native Maori. Hogg’s version, by the Dutch engraver, Gerald Sibelius (1734-1785), is a close reproduction.
Not on view
In Collection(s)