Man watching street photographer.

A popular nuisance – controlling the street photographers

By the mid-1930s the street photography ‘craze’ saw increasing numbers of photographers on Sydney’s streets – all competing for the best locations and the most promising marks

A man sits at a desk and looks at an album of pictures through a magnifying glass
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A recent acquisition uncovers rare tintype photographs

Tintypes are photographs printed on thin sheets of metal, rather than card. MHNSW doesn’t hold many in our collections, so this discovery is an exciting one

Words overlaying image.

About the exhibition: A thousand words

An innovative new exhibition invites the public to become the curator, sharing their responses to historical photographs from two of Australia’s richest and most significant collections

Sylvia Evans reading in her bedroom at Alwyn, Arncliffe, around 1927 / Alan Evans

Alan Spearman Evans Collection

The Alan Spearman Evans Collection comprises over 2000 photographic images of houses, house interiors, garden landscapes and industrial workplaces in NSW

Cecil Healy in the dinghy, 'Port Hacking'

An Edwardian Summer: Sydney through the lens of Arthur Wigram Allen

A talent for amateur photography produced extraordinary pictures that offer a fresh insight into the Edwardian years in Sydney


Behind the scenes: How to read a ‘special’

Around the world, police forces followed established conventions when taking mugshots. But Sydney police in the 1920s did things differently

Black and white image from the 1920s of a man who looks to be in his 50s.


Sydney’s underworld bosses were tough, resolute and violent – mess with one and you would know you had been in a fight


City of a million faces

The passing of years has given many street photographs greater significance than may have been anticipated when they were taken