Icescapes and wildlife

Icescapes

Hurley's work documenting the ice provides us with an accurate picture of the often confronting conditions in which the men of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition lived and worked.

Drawing on his experience as a landscape photographer Hurley had an eye for the dramatic and evocative landscape. His desire for artistic representations and for a precise artistic outcome meant that many of his shots were well composed and rich in feature and form.

Hurley’s images of Antarctica are hauntingly beautiful. They are evocative reminders of the strangeness and magnitude of the ice so far to the south of the Australian continent.

Where ice cliff and rock meet at Land's End
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
aae_36713
Crevassed berg met 30 miles from Cape Denison
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36517
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[Exhibition of pictures taken during the Australasian Antarctic Expedition and other photographic studies by Frank Hurley]
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
a199004
[Exhibition of pictures taken during the Australasian Antarctic Expedition and other photographic studies by Frank Hurley]
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
a199001
[Exhibition of pictures taken during the Australasian Antarctic Expedition and other photographic studies by Frank Hurley]
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
a199002
Interior of cave beneath the ice wall east of John-O-Groats
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
aae_36827
South side of off-lying islet immediately west of winter quarters
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
aae_36717
Portion of panorama on the Great Mackellar Islet looking towards the main land (left hand complement)
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
aae_36842
A ravine in the ice of the coastal slopes; the figure is Correll
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
a128094
A picturesque ice formation. Shore ice
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36738
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Picturesque shore ice, Cape Denison & the "Aurora" at anchor
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36734
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A stalactite-draped grotto on the sea coast near Winter Quarters
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36741
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The frozen furrowed surface of Anemometer Lake
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36739
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A sunset at Cape Denison
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36672
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Two-headed berg showing old sea-level erosion marks
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36543
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Dr. Mertz and a coastal ice formation near Cape Denison
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36714
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Looking down from the coast ice cliffs upon a small rocky islet just east of John-O-Groats, Commonwealth Bay
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36703
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A canopy of cloud over Commonwealth Bay
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36668
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Frost formation on inside of roof windows. The living hut, Cape Denison
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36873
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Wildlife

During the first year of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition and particularly during the last relief voyage of the expedition, (1914) Hurley was fascinated by the natural history of the south and he took beautiful and affectionate photographs of the wildlife. Hurley’s images of the wildlife of Antarctica were among the first ever taken.

Hurley's shots were carefully crafted and technically excellent. He experimented with his photographic equipment, camera technique and subjects; assessing light, angles and perspectives. Hurley, the perfectionist, was in his element.

The images of the animals of the south show us the tremendous power of life in the Antarctic. Despite the rigours of the environment, the Antarctic wildlife survives and breeds. Hurley saw this life and rendered it in his photography.

[Exhibition of pictures taken during the Australasian Antarctic Expedition and other photographic studies by Frank Hurley]
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
a249014
a1985001h.jpg
[Exhibition of pictures taken during the Australasian Antarctic Expedition and other photographic studies by Frank Hurley]
1911-1914
Frank Hurley
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Digital ID: 
a1985001
Antarctic petrel, Cape Hunter
Hurley, Frank, 1885-1962
Digital ID: 
a128140
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Antarctic petrels at nest
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36676
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Megalestris macormickii on nest, Mackellar Islets
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36671
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An Adelie penguin and moulting young
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36566
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Ice-caked Adelie penguins after a blizzard; Cape Denison
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36516
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Weddell seal just waked (sic) up, rises on one flipper to view the photographer
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36687
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Weddell seals basking on gondolas of ice in the Boat Harbour
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36744
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S.Y."Aurora" anchored to the floe ice off Queen Mary Land
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
a6302001
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Crab-eater seal at Cape Denison
Xavier Mertz
Digital ID: 
aae_37062
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Seal & penguin life at the water's edge in summer; Boat Harbour, Cape Denison
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36508
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Snow petrel on nest
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36052
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Silver grey petrel on nest, Stillwell Island
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36673
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Young sea-elephants and Royal penguins at South End; Macquarie Island
Frank Hurley
Digital ID: 
aae_36963
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Made possible through a partnership with the Graham & Charlene Bradley Foundation.