Hope in Hell is a rich visual account of one of the oldest and best-preserved examples of colonial Sydney architecture, the Darlinghurst Gaol. A place steeped in Australia's early, brutal history and reputedly haunted by convict ghosts, it has been the centre of Sydney's art scene for 83 years and continues to be a place of creative and artistic endeavour---the National Art School.
From 1822, when work on the perimeter walls began, to 1914, when the gaol inmates were moved to Long Bay, these sandstone buildings housed some of the most notorious criminals in Australia's history, including Captain Moonlite, the Rennie boys, and Aboriginal outlaw, Jimmy Governor, whose story was later told in the book and film The Chant of Jimmy Blacksmith. Deborah Beck has detailed the site's extraordinary journey---from a place of misery and degradation in the early years to its role as one of Australia's premier visual arts institutes, embracing such talents as Rayner Hoff, William Dobell and Margaret Olley.
Richly illustrated with over 200 photographs, this is a fascinating and important social and architectural history of one of Sydney's most significant heritage sites.
Hope in Hell by Deborah Black
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