St Mary’s Anglican Church in North Melbourne was completed in stages between 1858 and 1868. It was designed by architect Lloyd Tayler in the Gothic Revival style and is constructed of bluestone with freestone mullions and window tracery.
This project identified original and subsequent decorative schemes to the east wall of the chancel. Nicola determined these by completing documentary and photographic research, as well as onsite and microscopic investigation of the painted surfaces. Through these processes, seven historic schemes were identified, and a new scheme was developed. This was based on a 1922 photograph, colours identified through investigation of the surviving paint layers, and a newspaper description from 1889. Sara McPherson was then commissioned to paint the decorative banners. The ‘holy holy holy’ banner was originally painted directly onto the substrate. After recording it, the original lettering was painted over, and Sara painted a new version on a new paint layer. The ‘Magnificat’ banner was originally painted onto paper or canvas which was then applied to the wall, however this had been removed at some stage. In collaboration with Sara, a new banner was created based on a 1922 photo and onsite evidence.