Captured: Portraits of Crime with Penny Stannard – NSW Archives and Records

We think nothing of seeing a celebrity mug shot these days but how about a mug shot that’s almost 150 years old?

Dr Penny Stannard and her amazing team at NSW State Archives and Records digitised over 46,000 files to bring the exhibition Captured: Portraits of Crime to life.

The exhibition explores the stories of men, women and children who were incarcerated in NSW gaols from 1870 to 1930.The photographs have already shed light on some hidden family histories and provide an insight into what society thought was a crime at the time, such as homosexuality or being a ‘neglected child’.

The exhibition avoids the celebrity criminal instead searching out the ‘ordinary’. The photographs capture a moment in time and some argue perhaps unfairly provide a record of permanence that far outlasts both the prisoner and their crime.

Captured: Portraits of Crime is presented through a Western Sydney exhibition, a regional touring exhibition and an online exhibition. Find out more here

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