In 1987, Geelong Gallery received the generous Dorothy McAllister Bequest, which added an extensive collection of decorative arts to the permanent collection - including several by the popular Geelong porcelain painter Florence Royce - and a significant financial legacy.
Dorothy McAllister was a prominent local citizen, and a staunch supporter of Geelong Gallery. The terms of her bequest have a distinctly local focus on the acquisition of colonial Victorian silver, and a wider view to the acquisition of painted British, Welsh and Irish porcelain from the period 1750 to 1850.
The Dorothy McAllister Bequest Fund has supported the acquisition of gold rush-era Australian metalwork by Charles Brownlow and Edward Fischer (as well as rare archival material pertaining to Fischer’s life and career in Geelong), and contemporary porcelain by Australian artists including Gwyn Hanssen Pigott.
Pictured are some Coalport decorative plates acquired for the permanent collection through the Dorothy McAllister Bequest Fund in 1991. The Coalport manufactory produced tablewares with designs featuring moulded edges that emulated similar designs found on Welsh examples from Nantgarw and Swansea.