Jane Garling is a lawyer with extensive experience working as a solicitor in the area of dispute resolution. She has also been engaged over a lengthy period as a lecturer in the Faculties of Law at Macquarie University and subsequently at the University of Technology Sydney. In both her commercial and academic roles, her area of interest was the strategic management of significant claims to ensure their efficient and appropriate resolution, including the wide-ranging use of alternative dispute resolution initiatives. An interest in cultural heritage led to her long-term involvement with The Eryldene Trust, a not for profit organisation, including membership of its board. She recently completed research as part of a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) into the production and exchange of early Australian colonial art and its place in the establishment of national identity.
What inspired you to take this role?
The State Library of New South Wales has played a central role in the cultural life of our State since the State Government’s purchase of the Australian Subscription Library in 1826. From that date, the Library has built an extraordinary collection of paintings, manuscripts and other materials and it is the conservation, augmentation and presentation of this collection which inspires me today. The opening of the Michael Crouch Family Galleries and the John B Fairfax Centre in 2018 has allowed greater accessibility to the collection, presenting prized objects in an informed cultural context thanks to the knowledge and expertise of Library staff members. The collection continues to inform and challenge my deep interest in and research of early Australian colonial art.
Photo: Jane Garling is seated in the Mitchell Reading Room’s Special Collections area with a watercolour landscape by Frederick Garling (1806–1873). Her study of Australian colonial painting is focused on the collection held by the State Library.