This is a ghost ship.
An imaginary ship.
A recreation of a saloon table on board a C19th passenger ship.
The saloon was the focus of shipboard life for first class passengers. A place to gather for sumptuous meals and socialising by gaslight, while surrounded by velvet pile carpets, mahogany tables, mirrors and soft furnishings of gold satin damask.
This experience was not enjoyed by everyone on board a ship. Sailors and steerage passengers endured far rougher passages.
In the end, the violence of a shipwreck and the decay of years in sand and saltwater put an end to velvet carpets and gold damask, leaving less fragile materials on the ocean floor.
Artefacts from seven Victorian shipwrecks are at this dinner party. Each of them has their own story.
Generously supported by the Commonwealth Department of the Environment.
Installation design: Thylacine
Artefact photography: Martin Zweep
Photographed at the Mission to Seafarers, Victoria
Curated by Annie Muir and Jane Mitchell
Historical images from the collections of the State Library of Victoria and the National Library of Australia