A rare collection of paintings is on display at the Yamba Museum. Even more incredible that the collection was found in a suitcase under a bed at Yamba’s Pacific Hotel, after the death of hotel manager Frank O’Grady who managed this iconic establishment in the 1930s and 1940s.
These original watercolours are part of a collection of 223 paintings donated to Yamba Museum in 2000.
There are detailed drawings of many different fish, sharks and other marine animals, with informative notes about their size, where they came from and whether or not they were suitable for eating. They can be found locally, as well as in other parts of Australia and the world. Some paintings are dated back to the late 1880s.
Who is the artist?
The artist’s identity is still uncertain despite much investigation by the Australian National Maritime Museum. It is suspected that the artist is Dr Joseph Pearson (1881-1971) FRSE FLS, a British-born zoologist and marine biologist who became Director of the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery in 1933.