Mural Archaeology: Mining the Hidden Wallpaper Treasures of Oatlands
Local wallpaper expert and one of the drivers of the Tasmanian Decorated Interiors database, Alan Townsend will present an insightful and quirky account of what people were lining their walls with in 19th century Oatlands and how that gives an insight into their lives, tastes and improvisation.
From butcher’s bills to marriage certificates, homework and grandma’s dress fabric, just about every conceivable item was used in the hard Oatlands winters to cover over the cracks in the walls of our towns poorer inhabitants. Thanks to the efforts of generous homeowners and hardworking volunteers, a lot of these relics are now coming to light. Thus, Oatlands now has a unique window into living in the 19th century, as seen through the wallpapers and everything else that got glued to the timber walls of Oatlands. Now safely stored in Mylar, these extraordinary finds tell some surprising stories about life in 19th century Van Diemen’s Land. As part of this year’s Heritage Festival, Alan Townsend will share some of these stories and give us a glimpse of the artefacts themselves