Fermoy on Foot Art Trail

Explore treasures from the David Roche Gallery on a walking art trail around historic North Adelaide

North Adelaide
Mid July – September 2024



Fermoy on Foot is a 2.3km curated art trail through the charming streets, laneways and Park Lands of North Adelaide. Fourteen works of art from David Roche Gallery’s Fermoy collection have been carefully selected to reveal hidden histories and connections with locations around the historic precinct.

Available for viewing as a self-guided trail, history and art enthusiasts will love the opportunity to get outside and learn more about the area through treasures held within Melbourne Street’s David Roche Gallery.

Hit the streets during winter and early spring 2024. Access the map on your smart device or pick up a printed trail guide from the David Roche Gallery at 241 Melbourne Street, the North Adelaide Community Centre at 176 Tynte St North Adelaide, the City of Adelaide Customer Service Centre at 25 Pirie Street Adelaide or participating businesses along the trail.

Most importantly - don’t forget to plan your stop at one of the many cafes and dining spots along the way!

Guided tours

Join the David Roche Gallery Curator Timothy Roberts on a guided tour, where you'll hear the extended stories behind the works of art and their chosen locations. Book your tour here.

Getting there

By bus: Take the free city loop bus 98A or 98C from the city to North Adelaide.

By car: Free parking is available at the David Roche Gallery or the Dunn Street carpark off Melbourne Street.

About the David Roche Gallery and Fermoy House

Founded by David Roche, the gallery showcases over 3,500 items including fine art, European furniture, ceramics, metalware, clocks and paintings. These exquisite pieces are displayed in Fermoy House, Roche’s former residence on Melbourne Street.

About North Adelaide

North Adelaide is known for its historic pubs, boutique shops, bespoke cafes, and cosmopolitan dining experiences. Enjoy the blend of heritage charm and contemporary living amidst leafy green streets and the scenic Park Lands.

Downloadable Map

Download the trail map or follow the online map below to navigate the trail.


    The trail

    The artworks

    Pug 1888

    Maud Earl (Britain/United States 1863–1943)

    oil on board

    33cm diameter

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    Built in 1897 for Frederick Kilsby and his family, the residence at 241 Melbourne Street was named Llandaff after the village near Cardiff, Wales. When Kilsby, his wife and two children moved into the property the family brought with them a pug named Leo.

    This portrait of a pug was painted by celebrated canine artist Maud Earl. Her father George was a distinguished artist in this genre, and taught her how to paint, prior to her formal studies at the Royal Female School of Art in London. Earl painted this work at 25 years of age, going on to paint several dogs owned by royalty.

    This is one of 6 works by Maud Earl in the David Roche Collection.

    Fermoy on foot pug

    Mr R. Hanbury’s favourite foxhound 1844

    Edmund Havell jnr (Britain 1819–1894)

    oil on canvas

    61.5 x 74cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    In January 1952, David Roche purchased the residence at 241 Melbourne Street, and renamed the property Fermoy House. He lived here until his death in 2013.

    David loved dogs since an early age and was committed to a life with them. When he was 21 years old, he became qualified as an All Breeds canine conformation judge through the South Australian Kennel Club. Where the David Roche Gallery’s exhibition wing now stands, he built Fermoy Kennels, where Kerry Blue Terriers, Afghan Hounds and Smooth Fox Terriers were bred, among others.

    This portrait of a foxhound was presented to David Roche by his mother and father on his twenty-first birthday.

    Fermoy on foot hanbury

    Lion c.1810

    attributed to Benjamin Zobel (Germany/Britain 1762–1830) 

    coloured sand on paper 

    28 x 35cm 

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    The Lion Brewery and Malthouse was established in the early 1870s and produced a variety of alcoholic beverages into the early twentieth century. Later, soft drinks were manufactured at the site. The brewery’s productions could be identified by a fearsome lion, which stood proudly on each bottle’s label.

    This picture of a less fearsome lion is thought to be made by master pastry chef, table decker, and artist Benjamin Zobel. It is created in the art of marmotinto, using naturally coloured and dyed sands and dusts to create the image.

    Fermoy on foot lion

    Therese, Queen Consort of Bavaria 1827–1830

    studio of Joseph Karl Stieler (Germany 1781–1858) 

    oil on canvas 

    68 x 52.5cm 

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    Therese Charlotte Luise of Saxe-Hildburghausen was born in 1792, daughter of Frederick, Duke of Saxe-Altenburg and his wife Charlotte Georgine of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. In October 1810 Therese married Crown Prince Ludwig of Bavaria, and festivities lasting nearly one week were held in the Kingdom’s capital, Munich. The following year, the citizens of Munich restaged some of the festivities, which developed into the annual Oktoberfest.

    This half-length portrait was painted after Ludwig and Therese were crowned King and Queen of Bavaria in October 1825 and depicts Therese in her coronation robes. It was formerly installed at Altenburg Castle near Leipzig, then Marienburg Castle, near Hanover, Germany.

    Fermoy on foot therese

    The music lesson c.1765

    Chelsea Porcelain Factory (Britain c. 1745–1785), manufacturer 

    Joseph Willems (Flanders/Britain 1716–1766), modeller 

    soft-paste porcelain, polychrome enamel, gilt 

    40 x 33 x 23cm 

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    In the eighteenth century, porcelain was a luxury item, and could only be afforded by the upper class and nobility. The Chelsea Porcelain factory was Britain’s premier porcelain manufacturer in the mid-eighteenth century and created useful wares and figural sculptures.

    The music lesson is based on a painting by French artist François Boucher. It depicts a shepherd boy and a shepherdess having a tryst, making music together in a secluded garden surrounded by flowering hawthorn blossoms. It is the largest, most technically complex, and important porcelain group made by Chelsea.

    Nearby, the Lion Hotel is well known as a former and current live music venue, and Adelaide is Australia’s first and only UNESCO City of Music.

    Fermoy on foot music

    Coffee pots and cream pot 1730s–40s

    Meissen Porcelain Manufactory (Germany established 1710)

    hard-paste porcelain, polychrome enamel, gilt

    largest: 22.5cm high 

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    Beverages made from brewed coffee beans can be traced to the Ethiopian Empire and Arabian Peninsula in the fifteenth century. By the sixteenth century, coffee had spread to Europe and became tremendously popular. In the eighteenth century it became fashionable among the upper classes to serve this stimulating beverage in porcelain jugs, cups and bowls. The Meissen Porcelain Manufactory supplied porcelain to many royal and noble households, including a service which was presented to Venetian nobleman Francesco Foscari by Crown Prince Friedrich Christian of Saxony.

    Coffee’s arrival in Europe heralded the emergence of the public coffee house, the pairing of coffee and cakes as a light meal and the social activity of a coffee catch-up.

    Fermoy on foot coffee pot 1 Fermoy on foot coffee pot 2 Fermoy on foot coffee pot 3 Fermoy on foot coffee pot 4

    Portrait of a Lady in the guise of Diana c.1740

    studio of Jean-Marc Nattier (France 1685-1766)

    still-life elements attributed to Alexandre-François Desportes (France 1661-1743)

    oil on canvas

    196 x 130cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    Whether it be an important meeting, a catch-up with friends, or a quick trip to the local shops, what we wear in public often extends beyond mere comfort and practicality. Our clothing and accessories may give onlookers an insight into our financial position, our cultural traditions, or our occupation and even our hobbies, interests, and personal sense of style.

    This full-length portrait presents an unidentified lady in the guise of the goddess Diana. Her animal pelt, bow and quiver of arrows, hunting dog and trophy of game symbolise Diana’s persona as Huntress, while her crescent-shaped hair jewel references Diana’s association with the moon. This painting would probably have hung in a public area of the sitter’s residence and viewers at that time would have understood the symbolism of Diana as a protective and provident figure.

    Fermoy on foot diana

    Tawney, a Gordon Setter c.1825

    workshop of Filippo Puglieschi (Italy active 1800-1840)

    glass micromosaic

    2.9 x 4.3cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    In the early nineteenth century, Rome was a major production centre of micromosaics. Using tiny pieces of coloured glass to create an image, micromosaics could be used to decorate objects of all shapes and sizes from small snuffboxes to monumental tabletops. They could even be made to resemble full-sized canvas paintings.

    This micromosaic is based on a painting by Johann Wenzel Peter depicting Tawney, a Gordon Setter belonging to William, 6th Duke of Devonshire. Wenzel painted Tawney in 1819 and several micromosaic artists copied it through the 1820s. Most remarkably, this intricate image measures just 2.9 x 4.3 cm, and is mounted on the lid of a snuff box. Approximately 300 pieces of glass are used per square centimetre!

    Fermoy on foot tawney

    Snuff box c.1765

    gold, enamel, diamonds

    6.2 x 8.5 x 4.3cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    In the hands of a jeweller even the humble box can become an astonishing work of art. This box features four types of gold and is embellished with diamonds and enamel paintings depicting music, architecture, astronomy, painting, poetry and sculpture. It was possibly a gift from Frederick II, King of Prussia, to Baron Hermann Werner von der Asseburg, a high-ranking government minister.

    Nearly a century after this box was made, Henry Steiner arrived in Adelaide from Germany and established himself as a jeweller. His business flourished over the next two decades and in the mid-1880s Steiner redeveloped this site, erecting these impressive bluestone semi-detached houses.

    Fermoy on foot vienna

    Butcher's shop diorama c.1850

    wood, metal, paper, paint

    50.5 x 70.5 x 20cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    This astonishing diorama depicts a butcher’s shopfront, made from tiny individually carved pieces of wood. The butcher, his assistant, and an apprentice stand proudly in front of an extensive range of cuts, which range from lamb carcasses and beef ribs to a hog’s head and an ox heart. All the accoutrement for the shop can be seen, including butcher’s blocks, a ladder, a knife, knife sharpener, and even a pole to unhook the prime cuts!

    It is unclear why these glazed shadow boxes were made. They may have been placed in a butcher’s window when the shop was closed or on hot days, as the cuts of meat and types of carcasses are rendered with some accuracy. These dioramas went out of fashion as refrigeration became more common.

    Fermoy on foot butcher

    Bacchante centre table c.1810

    Clemente Ciuli (Italy 1781–1855?), mosaicist

    glass mosaic, marble

    111cm diameter

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    This tabletop is created from thousands of pieces of cut glass using the mosaic technique. It depicts a Bacchante (a female follower of Bacchus), and is possibly based on a portrait of Emma, Lady Hamilton painted by French artist Elizabeth Vigée le Brun.

    By the late eighteenth century, Bacchic representations were not closely associated with drunkenness and revelry. Instead, to be portrayed as a Bacchante would suggest that the sitter was carefree, independent and could dedicate their attention to their own pursuits and interests. Bacchantes also idealised the sitter’s attractive personality and sensuality, seen here most expressively by her over-the-shoulder gaze towards us.

    Fermoy on foot bacchant

    Gower ponies 1859

    William Henry Hopkins (Britain 1825–1892)

    oil on canvas

    44 x 60cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    St Margaret’s was built in 1889-90 for financier and developer Arthur Waterhouse, with servants’ quarters, a coach house and stabling added by the end of the nineteenth century. This grand residence is noteworthy for being in such excellent state of preservation and is constructed from Tapley Hill bluestone with high-quality red brick dressings.

    In this painting, a pair of wild Gower Ponies look out over the rocky cliffs of the Gower peninsula across the Bristol Channel. St Margaret’s and other homes on Brougham Place and nearby Stanley Place command a similar view across the majestic and ancient Adelaide Plains towards the Adelaide Hills.

    Fermoy on foot ponies

    Sheep and poultry in a landscape c.1880

    Cornelis van Leemputten (Belgium 1841–1902)

    oil on panel 18.5 x 25cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    The phrase ‘On the sheep’s back’ alludes to the critical part that Australia’s wool industry has played in determining the nation’s economic prosperity. The residence at 187 Brougham Place was the home of Sidney Wilcox, a director of wool, skin, and hide brokers Messrs. George Wilcox & Co. (later Wilcox, Mofflin, Ltd). Sidney Wilcox’s attentive nurture of the business founded by his father saw the firm expand into one of the leading businesses of its kind in the world.

    An inspiring philanthropist, Wilcox donated £5,000 to the University of Adelaide in 1940 to establish a women’s college. He later bequeathed the title of his Brougham Place home for the same purpose. St. Ann’s College was opened on 16 March 1947 with 16 students in residence and still operates on the site for a cohort of approximately 200 students to this day.

    Fermoy on foot sheep

    The French actress, La Duchesnois and her children 1825

    Jenny Berger (France 1776–1858)

    oil on canvas

    71 x 91.5cm

    The David Roche Collection, Adelaide

    This beautifully rendered scene of filial love depicts a mother and her three children. It is possible that the sitter is Catherine-Joséphine Duchesnois, a French actress who was celebrated for her performances in tragic roles. The artist, Jenny Berger made a successful business painting portraits of well-to-do tourists to Paris as well as socially mobile locals.

    Nearby this site, the Women's and Children's Hospital provides invaluable specialist care services for women and children as well as important community-based health services.

    Fermoy on foot duchesnois