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largest companies to document their activities, including Alcoa, Australia Pulp and Paper Manufacturers, Comalco, Hamersley Iron, John Holland, John Lysaght, Shell and Vickers Ruwolt. Renowned architectural firms such as Bates, Smart and McCutcheon, Hassall & McConnell, Leith & Bartlett, Winston Hall, and Yuncken & Freeman commissioned him to document their buildings. In the 1950s Sievers received a commission from the Department of Overseas Trade with a brief to change Australia's image from a land of sheep and wool to an image of a sophisticated industrial and manufacturing nation.


Biography/History: Sievers is one of Australia's most significant and influential photographers. Born in Germany in 1913, he trained at the Contemporary School for the Applied Arts in Berlin (an off shoot of the famous Bauhaus School) and took architectural photographs for his father's books on Berlin's historical buildings before emigrating to Australia in 1938. He opened his own studio in Melbourne and carried on a commercial practice for some years, gradually coming to specialise in industry and architecture.

Under the laws governing Legal Deposit the National Library contains a copy of every book published in Australia.

So a catalogue search of the terms Mapoon, Weipa, Napranum and Aurukun brings up all sorts of publications not easily accessible elsewhere. For example a lot of the pamphlets written by Nicholas Hey after his retirement from Mapoon are available.


One of the gems in the National Library is the Wolfgang Sievers photographic collection, much of which is online. Sievers (1913-2007) was commissioned by Comalco to photograph the development of the Weipa bauxite province from the early days of construction through to 1971.


Some 13,700 black-and-white and colour photographs and some 51,700 negatives and transparencies black-and-white and colour:


Connect to the catalogue --> here

The catalogue entry reads, in part,

Sievers photographic archive, held by the National Library, depicts Australia's industry, mining, architecture and workforce from 1938 to 1991. Sievers was commissioned by Australia's

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