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20/20 by Jun Chen


Celebrating twenty years with twenty new portrait commissions

Saturday 20 October 2018 until Sunday 10 February 2019

20/20 showcases the dynamic suite of new portraits commissioned to celebrate the National Portrait Gallery’s 20th year. Leaders and individualists invited by the Gallery were matched with unique artists to create distinctive contemporary portraits.

For each portrait, an artist was invited whose insight makes for a stimulating, thoughtful match with their portrait subject.

Since the National Portrait Gallery’s foundation in 1998, over 50 portraits have entered the collection through the commissioning program. The 20 new portraits displayed in this exhibition continue the Gallery’s commitment to commissioning contemporary portraits.

As with the portraits purchased and donated to the Gallery, the subject of each commissioned portrait is an Australian who is recognised for the notable contributions they have made to society. Sitters were invited by the Gallery under the guidance of the Gallery’s Board of Directors.

Leading Australian portrait artists have been encouraged to exercise their artistic skill to create these new portraits. The program highlights the unique relationship between sitter and artist.

The significant support of donors has assisted the realisation of these portraits.

The complete suite of new commissions will be unveiled at the exhibition launch.

Andrew Gaze, 2018 by George Fetting

Coach and former professional basketball player Andrew Gaze will form part of 20/20 with a photographic portrait by Sydney-based photographer George Fetting. Commissioned with funds provided by Trent Birkett 2018.

Study of Louis Nowra, 2018 by Imants Tillers

Australian artist Imants Tillers has painted a larger than life portrait of one of Australia’s most prolific playwrights Louis Nowra. Commissioned 2018.

The Writer, Peter Goldsworthy, 2018 by Deidre But-Husaim

Adelaide-based visual artist Deidre But-Husaim has painted novelist and medical doctor Peter Goldsworthy. Commissioned with funds provided by Jillian Broadbent AO 2018.

Michelle Simmons, 2018 by Selina Ou

Quantum physicist and Australian of the Year for 2018 Michelle Simmons has been photographed by Malaysian born Australian photographer Selina Ou for 20/20. Commissioned with funds provided by the Sid and Fiona Myer Family Foundation 2018.

Tony Shaw, 2018 by Sarah Rhodes

Australian photographer Sarah Rhodes has photographed Tony Shaw, Brisbane-born rugby great, in black and white. Commissioned with funds from the Patrick Corrigan Portrait Commission Series 2018.

Portrait of Li Cunxin, 2017-18 by Jun Chen

Celebrated Chinese-Australian ballet dancer Li Cunxin completes the announcement of the first six portraits. Chinese-born artist Jun Chen has captured Cunxin in oil paint. Commissioned with funds provided by Tim Fairfax AC 2018.