Colour a collection series: Elizabeth Durack

3 November 2017

The Australian National University Library holds rich and diverse historic collections that are significant not only for their rarity, but for the continued impact they have on research and researchers worldwide. The ANU Library Colour a collection series showcases our special and rare collections by using historical material in an unusual and creative way, whilst also offering students an outlet to relax and practice mindfulness.

The latest colouring book features a selection of topographical sketches from a collection of artworks by Australian artist Elizabeth Durack (later Durack Clancy). This collection of 410 works is the result of her journey to Papua New Guinea in 1968. She was commissioned by the Australian Federal Minister for Territories and Minister for External Territories to: ‘Do something on the women of Papua New Guinea’. As she travelled throughout the country, she created insightful drawings and photographs, together with observations of women, children and the environment.

This collection of historical images fills a significant gap in scholarly research. The images illustrate the valuable and important role Papua New Guinean women and girls played in the development of their country, as it progressed towards nationhood and transitioned from village to ‘modernity’.

All images are available online, together with seven detailed commentaries on the collection and its value to researchers and historians.

Visit the Elizabeth Durack Online Exhibition.

Download the colouring book from the ANU Library website.