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Generated image of the artwork: 'Glengallan' sideboard

'Glengallan' sideboard 1868

The magnificent 'Glengallan' sideboard 1868 is one of Queensland's most significant examples of colonial furniture.

While the backboard depicts the national symbols of an emu and a kangaroo, the inclusion of the lorikeet and pineapple give it a more local flavour.

The carving is attributed to Matthew Fern, who was appointed the first instructor of wood carving at Brisbane Technical College in 1895. An 1868 press report from The Brisbane Courier records the first showing of the sideboard:

'It is satisfactory to know that our beautiful indigenous timbers are coming into favour for cabinet work. We had the pleasure yesterday of inspecting [at] Mr. Ebenston's ... a drawing and dining-room suite of furniture, of Queensland woods and Brisbane manufacture and made to order for Mr. John Deschar [sic], Glengallan station, Darling Downs ... It is satisfactory to find that our leading colonists are at last becoming alive to the advantages which our local cabinet makers and upholsterers are able to offer them.'