Friday, September 23, 2005

Endeavour Maoris

The Head of a Chief of New Zealand, the Face Curiously Tataowd or Mark'd According to their Manner in A Journal of the Voyage to the South Seas, in His Majesty's Ship, The Endeavour. Sydney Parkinson, 1773. (high resolution image)

An Heiva, or kind of Priest of Yoolee-Etea, & the Neighbouring Islands in A Journal of the Voyage to the South Seas, in His Majesty's Ship, The Endeavour. Sydney Parkinson, 1773.

Parkinson was draughtsman to Joseph Banks, the great naturalist who accompanied Captain Cook on his southern world tour. These images are from the same book but the Chief is a direct digital scan from the book housed in the Sir William Dixon Library at the State Library of NSW. It's on display with other miscellaneous rare book images.

The Heiva image was produced by optical character recognition (OCR) scanning of a photocopied microfilm. All the engravings from Parkinson's journal are displayed among the National Library of Australia South Seas Voyaging Accounts exhibition.

The OCR Chief image for comparison - click on the image for a zoomable flash interface. The black and white image has its own intrinsic aesthetic merits for mine.

1 comment:

nbm said...

pk, there's a show right now at the Metropolitan Museum on art from the Marquesas Islands that includes images (drawn and printed) of the wildly tattooed islanders.

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