This is one of the greatest photo series I’ve ever seen. Titled Five Stages of Inebriation, the five-photo sequence was taken somewhere between 1863 – 1868 by Australian photographer Charles Percy Pickering.
The New South Wales State Library is now the photo series’ home and its website gives us some background:
Possibly commissioned by a local temperance group for educative purposes, the photographs may also have been used by an engraver for illustrations. The penultimate frame of the drunk in a wheelbarrow resembles S.T. Gill’s watercolour ‘Ease without Opulence’, 1863.
Here are the extraordinary photos.
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