Skip to main content
Menu

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 both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

Lynne asleep in Vienna, 2016

by Nicholas Harding

ink on paper
24 x 33 cm (open sketchbook)
Collection of Nicholas Harding and Lynne Watkins, Sydney

In the mid-1970s, on the north coast of New South Wales, Nicholas Harding met a lithe golden-haired girl named Lynne Watkins. They’ve been together ever since. Lynne’s parents, teachers Keith and Edie Watkins, had a house at Wooli that Lynne’s grandfather built in the 1920s. In the 1990s, Keith and Edie built a new house on the block and retired to it; widowed, Edie still lives nearby. Having come to regard that region as home, Harding has recently equipped a studio in Byron Bay; but he and Lynne live in Newtown, Sydney, not far from his studio in Camperdown. For some years now Lynne’s clothes and hair have been inner-city art-world black, her nails lacquered, her skin pale. She’s Harding’s business manager, art critic and companion, his rock and his muse, sitting next to him at the theatre, opposite him at the café. They travel together by car, train or air to wherever he’s become obsessed with the landscape or the prospect of visiting a gallery. He carries a sketchbook. Often, in the midst of drawing commuters, dogs, flowers or the features of their accommodation, he’ll throw down a quick impression of his cherished wife.

© National Portrait Gallery 2020
King Edward Terrace, Parkes
Canberra, ACT 2600, Australia


Phone +61 2 6102 7000
Fax +61 2 6102 7001
ABN: 54 74 277 1196

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 both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.