Dorothea Quarry

David Trace (1937 - 2006)

Black and white photograph

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© David Trace

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  • About the work
    Country: UK
    City: London
    Place: Wales Office, Gwydyr House, Whitehall

    These photographs present dramatic mountainous landscapes of craggy rocks surrounding a body of water. In this apparently uninhabited place, the glass-like surface of the water reflects the sky in a perfect mirror-image.


    David Trace’s images capture two views of Dorothea Quarry, a flooded slate quarry in Gwynedd, North West Wales. Opened in 1820, it was famous for the quality of slate that was extracted from its deep pits. Production ended in 1970 after which the quarry was closed as a result of the decline of the national slate industry. Today, Dorothea Quarry, or ‘Dotty’ is an area that is popular with sport divers.

  • About the artist
    David Trace was born in Cardiff, where he attended Canton High School for Boys. A painter, sculptor and photographer, Trace took thousands of photographs in the London borough of Lambeth, between the early 1960s and the late 1990s in collaboration with the Minet Library. During the 1970s, he also documented London’s Camden Lock, where he had a studio. Trace died in London in 2006 and his friends and relatives have created a blog which records some of his photographic achievements, including his portraits of Welsh artist Jeffrey Steele (who also has work in the Government Art Collection) and 1960s English poet Jeff Nuttall.
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  • Details
    Dorothea Quarry
    Black and white photograph
    height: 30.00 cm, width: 32.00 cm
    Purchased from the photographer, June 1977
    GAC number