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Anne Hultzsch on Journal of a Residence in Chile

12 May, 2022

Sir Thomas Lawrence, Maria, Lady Callcott, 1819

Besides contributing to art criticism and historiography, Maria Graham (1785-1842, née Dundas and later Lady Callcott) was most successful at publishing the diaries of her travels. In these, she drew on a range of registers, from aesthetic and scientific to economic and political, besides that of gender. It is this range of approaches to understanding and experiencing spaces, which makes her contribution particularly valuable to architectural historians. It demonstrates how women, barred from the specificity of the expert’s or practitioner’s role, employed expert knowledge to describe the environments they found themselves in, be these built, social, or botanical. Graham’s Chilean diary in particular shows a critical engagement with the concept of the picturesque and the construction of layered landscapes.

 

Maria Graham, View of Quintero Bay, seen from the place where the house was (Valparaíso) taken from the book “Journal of a Residence in Chile” (1824)

Anne Hultzsch on Journal of a Residence in Chile

Besides contributing to art criticism and historiography, Maria Graham (1785-1842, née Dundas and later Lady Callcott) was most successful at publishing the diaries of her travels. In these, she drew on a range of registers, from aesthetic and scientific to economic and political, besides that of gender. It is this range of approaches to understanding […]