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​William S. Tatlow 1921-2016

It was with great sadness that we were recently informed of the passing of Mr. William S. Tatlow.

William S Tatlow was an ardent collector whose interests included books, Derby pottery from the 18th century to 1840, paintings and Australian pottery from the 1930s to 50s, and central Australian and regional NSW Aboriginal paintings. One other area of strong interest for Mr Tatlow was Asian art, ceramics and furniture. This particular area of attention was nurtured over a period of 25 years with the help and assistance of his good friend Mr Singh Mann. In 2003 Mr Tatlow offered this collection to Wollongong Art Gallery.

The development of public art collections is punctuated by the stories of benefactors and collectors whose generosity becomes the catalyst for the development of often unique and important collections in unexpected places. The Mann-Tatlow Asian Art Collection celebrates Mr. Tatlow, his passion and generosity.

Although Mr Tatlow had considered gifting his collection of Asian Art to various institutions, he'd developed a strong connection with the Illawarra during his residency here in the 1980s, and after some positive discussions with then Gallery Director Peter O'Neill decided on Wollongong Art Gallery. 

Mr Tatlow felt that it would fill a gap in the Gallery's collection which did not include the arts of Asia, and that the Gallery was best equipped to look after and present the collection to the community.

With the assistance of Mr Tatlow a new purpose-​built gallery space, the Mann-Tatlow Gallery, was developed to best display the Asian Art Collection to Gallery visitors. The inaugural exhibition of the Mann-Tatlow Asian Art Collection was opened to the public from November 2003 until August 2004 and enthusiastically embraced by visitors.

This generous gift to Wollongong Art Gallery has significantly enhanced the art collection and the Gallery's opportunity to engage with its community and remains as an ongoing memorial to Mr. Tatlow for future generations.