Gardener Required - Rozelle Hospital - The HDR Series

Philip Johnson

Newport Beach, Australia

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Artist's Description

MUCH BETTER VIEWED LARGER

In 1873 the Colonial Government of N.S. Wales purchased the Callan Park site, then known as “Callan Estates”, with the purpose of building a large lunatic asylum to ease the severe overcrowding at the Gladesville Hospital for the Insane, at Bedlam Point, near Tarban Creek in Gladesville. The new lunatic asylum was designed according to the ‘enlightened’ views of Dr Thomas Kirkbride, an American. Colonial Architect James Barnet worked with Inspector of the Insane Dr Frederick Norton Manning to produce a group of twenty neo-classical buildings. These were completed in 1885 and named the Kirkbride Block.

The buildings were originally designed to accommodate 666 inmates, but by 1890 the asylum was seriously overcrowded with a total of 1078 inmates. A further group of buildings were built close to the Kirkbride complex around 1900 to ease the overcrowding problem.

The Kirkbride complex continued to be used for the housing and treatment of inmates until 1994, when the last remaining services were transferred to other buildings in the Callan Park grounds, towards the Broughton Hall at the southern end of the site. Many inmates were also transferred into half-way-houses in the local communtiy, in line with the policy of the State Government (see The Richmond Report of 1983 which accelerated the move towards de-institutionalising care), creating a number of social and moral problems.

The former facility is now occupied by Sydney College of the Arts, the fine arts campus of Sydney University.

Currently, the parklands are open to the public for their use and enjoyment, with the hospital being confined to a number of purpose-built complexe

Equipment: Nikon D300 and Sigma 10-20mm lens

Artwork Comments

  • emolena
  • Rosalie Scanlon
  • DeviousLili
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