Max Dupain – and those photos

ziegler book
Well, the State Library of NSW have splashed Penrith all over the place with photographs of Penrith in the 1940s by Max Dupain. These photographs can be viewed in the booklet Penrith, the town and its surrounding district, held in Penrith Library’s Research Room (open 2-5 each day). Max Dupain’s photographic collection is a wonderful addition to the State Library, but, the State Library need to get their facts right about the booklet. Ziegler approached the Council about publishing a touristy booklet, and it was not related to the Council’s forthcoming amalgamation in 1949. Council paid for the publication as well. For more info on the ‘real’ story read the book – Penrith: the makings of a City (2014) by Lorraine Stacker, a book also funded by Penrith City Council!
From Penrith: the Makings of a City, and Treasures of Penrith’s past (2015).
In 1947 editor and publisher Oswald Ziegler approached Penrith Council with a
proposal to produce a pictorial booklet on Penrith. In order to show his credentials
Ziegler presented the Council with three of his latest publications as a donation
to the Library – This is Australia; Newcastle, 150 Years and By your Deeds. He had
been working on a similar booklet for Goulburn (1946) and successfully encouraged
Penrith Council to publish 5,000 booklets entitled Penrith, the Town and its Surrounding District, in Picture and Story in 1948
Many businesses and industries were showcased, from St Marys to Emu Plains,Wallacia to Castlereagh, indicating a district’s identity with Penrith as the centre.This publication, marketed to the overseas and Australian tourist, was the first promotional booklet for the town and was one of the first by Ziegler.
His photographer was the well-renowned Max Dupain, whose photographs form a core collection of images of postwar Penrith. Although Dupain was none too pleased with Ziegler’s approach to the cutting and collaging of photographs by Ziegler’s graphic artist Gert Sellheim, the booklet showcased the district as it had never been seen before. The prize winning Sellheim, interned for three months because of his German citizenship in 1943, designed the famous flying kangaroo symbol for Qantas in 1947. Eve Keane, author of a number of historical works in the 1950s, wrote the text.
Lorraine Stacker
Information Librarian
Penrith City Library
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