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Tony Sowersby
Video: 1 minute 59 seconds

- Well, Sabine's, she's the sister-in-law of one of my oldest friends so I've known her for a while. And originally I was gonna do it as like a comic thing, not with her, with another postie I knew who lended more to the comic side. But then when the pandemic struck I thought, no, there's a much deeper meaning to that. I think it says on the thing that when we were taking that, I did it based on a series of photos 'cause we couldn't take the postie bike and they all just kept looking like, you know, publicity shots for the post office. And so I said we'll draw it front on and then I said, look at me like you haven't got time for this shit. And she said, "I've got two teenage kids, so I can do that." And so we, yeah, with her looking more severe it worked better. And all the way through painting it, I just said, look are you sure, you know? And she goes, "No, I'd rather have my face like that "cause that represented the reality of." She said it was like working Christmas rush constantly for three months. And there was, I can't remember the name of the art critic, but there was a guy in England who said that "Lockdown actually meant that "the middle class stayed home "and the working class brought them stuff." And that's sort of, I read that after I'd started the painting but it sort of fit in what I was trying to do. And that's, you know, the streets are empty, everybody's inside. We tried with her wearing the mask, but I thought, no I want people to see her face. So we just hung on the side of the bike. So yeah.

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

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