AICCM Symposium 2006, Conservation of Paper, Books and Photographic Materials. Post-prints and Posters. 19-21 April 2006, Wellington, New Zealand. p159-173
The First Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia: The Ministry and the House of Representatives is a large framed composite object consisting of 71 individual platinum prints and associated text panels adhered to a cloth backing. Received into the custody of the National Archives of Australia from an unknown source prior to 1967, little is known of its provenance. The platinum print photographic process was invented in 1873 and has produced some of the most stable photographic images known. Whilst ‘Men with Beards’ shows deterioration typical of the platinum process, a number of anomalies have been found on the images that do not appear to have been described in the conservation or photographic literature. This paper will discuss the platinum printing process and the anomalies found in the object, and outline the condition analysis performed. It will also investigate the provenance trail for ‘Men with Beards’.