Become a bookplate donor
If you’re looking for a gift to celebrate a special person or book lover in your life, then a personalised bookplate inside a book from the State collection would be ideal.
Your personal tribute to a friend or family member will be placed inside a specially selected book in from the State collection and preserved for future generations.
Each bookplate features a stunningly detailed illustration from the Library’s Rare Books collection, with a dedication to your gift recipient, or yourself. You are welcome to view the bookplate once it has been added to the collection.
The bookplate illustrations will be updated annually, and we hope you enjoy the 2023 series featuring botanical prints.
This unique, tax-deductible donation gives twice – it’s an ideal gift and it also supports the Library’s work in building our collection.
Choose your bookplate
You can select from the following bookplates, named after master illustrators whose valuable works are held in the Library’s collection:
- $175: Charles Norton (1826–1872)
- $500: Fanny Elizabeth De Mole (1835–1866)
- $1000: Pierre-Joseph Redouté (1759–1840)
Your gift is tax deductible.
About the illustrators
Charles Norton was born 1826 in Somerset, England, and arrived in Victoria in December 1842. Charles was a civil servant, draughtsman, photographer, sketcher and squatter, first at Tooralle, near Clunes, and then at Carlsbadt, near Geelong.
Norton took part in the first exhibition of the Victorian Society of Fine Arts in 1857 with his study in watercolours Victorian Insects and then later showed Flowers from Nature at the 1862 Melbourne Exhibition of Fine Arts which the Argus considered 'distinguished for their literal truth’.
Fanny Elizabeth De Mole was one of the colony’s first botanical artists. Born in England in 1835, Fanny migrated to Australia in 1857, aged 22, to join her 2 brothers and for health reasons. Within 4 years she had written and illustrated Wildflowers of South Australia, the first book on South Australia’s flora. Only 100 copies of this book containing 20 high quality hand-coloured plates were produced in 1861.
De Mole subsequently exhibited flower paintings at the annual exhibitions of the South Australian Society, winning several prizes at the Society's 1865 exhibition.
In 1866, 5 years after the publication of Wildflowers, Fanny died of tuberculosis at Willunga, near Adelaide.
Born in 1759, Pierre-Joseph Redouté was a painter and botanist from Belgium and is widely recognised as the greatest botanical illustrator of all time, particularly for his watercolours of roses, lilies and other flowers at the Château de Malmaison, near Paris. Redouté was the official court artist to Queen Marie-Antoinette. He survived the turbulent political upheaval of the French Revolution and Reign of Terror, and earned renown for his illustrations of flowers that represented a unique fusion of botanical precision and artistic elegance.
Redouté collaborated with the greatest botanists of his day, particularly during 1798–1837, and participated in nearly 50 publications depicting both the familiar flowers of the French court and plants from places as distant as Japan, America, South Africa and Australia. Working from live plants rather than specimens, Redouté produced more than 2100 published plates depicting more than 1800 different species, many never rendered before. He was nicknamed ‘the Raphael of flowers’.