Tom Roberts View all by
About this artwork
The Opening of the First Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia by H.R.H. The Duke of Cornwall and York (later H.M. King George V), May 9, 1901, more commonly known in Australia as The Big Picture, is a 1903 painting by the Australian artist Tom Roberts. The painting, measuring 304.5 by 509.2 centimetres (119.9 in × 200.5 in), or roughly 10 by 17 feet, depicts the opening of the first Parliament of Australia at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne on 9 May 1901.
The painting is part of the Royal Collection but has been on permanent loan to the Parliament of Australia since 1957. The work, currently on display in Parliament House, Canberra, has been described as "undoubtedly the principal work of art recording Australia's Parliamentary History."
1856 - 1931 Tom Roberts, painter and photographer, was born on 8 March 1856 at Dorchester, Dorset, England. He arrived in Geelong on 22 June 1869 and settled in Collingwood. In his early years Roberts was encouraged to paint plein-air by Louis Buvelot and his interest in plein-air painting was further stimulated by a study tour of Europe between 1881 and 1885. In 1889, he exhibited 62 works in the 9 x 5 Impression Exhibition. In 1896 Roberts married and in 1903 the couple travelled to London. They returned in 1923 and settled at 'Talisman', their small cottage on half an acre, in Kallista. Tom Roberts, who was known as 'Bulldog' to his friends due to his tenacious personality. He died at 'Talisman' on 14 September 1931, and his ashes are buried in the Illawarra churchyard, near Longford, Tasmania.
What Our Customers Say:
Just a quick note to let you know I have received the order today and it is perfect. Just what I was looking for. Thank you so much for you help on this order, you were fantastic and very helpful.
Shanagh, Warrandyte, Victoria, Australia
Read more comments