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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 both past and present.

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

So Fine

Contemporary women artists make Australian history

This exhibition features new works from ten women artists reinterpreting and reimagining elements of Australian history, enriching the contemporary narrative around Australia’s history and biography, reflecting the tradition of storytelling in our country.

More information on So Fine

Selected images

Marilyn Ball, Albatross, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Marilyn Ball, Albatross, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
The Girls, Zoe Davis and Linde Ivimey, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
The Girls, Zoe Davis and Linde Ivimey, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Dana Bergstrom, Penguin, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Dana Bergstrom, Penguin, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Kate Kiefer, Killer Whale, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Kate Kiefer, Killer Whale, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Jack Egerton, Leopard Seal, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Jack Egerton, Leopard Seal, 2018 by Linde Ivimey
Cross-Stitched (Centre panel), 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Cross-Stitched (Centre panel), 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Ruffles on the Rajah, 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Ruffles on the Rajah, 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Cross Stitched, 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Cross Stitched, 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Ms, Mrs, and Miss Demeanours, 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
Ms, Mrs, and Miss Demeanours, 2018 by Bern Emmerichs
black seeds, 2017 by Carol McGregor
black seeds, 2017 by Carol McGregor
Emma Tear Tack, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
(in)visible, 2013 by Carol McGregor
(in)visible, 2013 by Carol McGregor
Lowe Kong Meng, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Lula Chinn, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
James Chung Gon, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Andrew Leon, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Gugug Go Tack, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Quong Tart, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
George Chow Bow, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Ah Young, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Tim Sang, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Jimmy Ah Foo, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Chang Woo Gow, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Captain Ah Gim, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Yip Hoy, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Wat A Che, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Mrs Lup Mun, 2017 Pamela See. © Pamela See
Presenting Jean Piron, 1793 - Femme du Cap de Diemen, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1793 - Femme du Cap de Diemen, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1792 - Sauvage des îles de l'Amirauté, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1792 - Sauvage des îles de l'Amirauté, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1792 - Sauvage de la Nouvelle Calédonie, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1792 - Sauvage de la Nouvelle Calédonie, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1793 - Femme de la Nouvelle Calédonie, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Presenting Jean Piron, 1793 - Femme de la Nouvelle Calédonie, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Femmes des îles des Amis, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Femmes des îles des Amis, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Homme de l'île Beaupré, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Homme de l'île Beaupré, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Homme du Cap de Diemen, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Homme du Cap de Diemen, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Homme du Cap de Diemen II, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Homme du Cap de Diemen II, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Sauvage de la Nouvelle Zéelande, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Sauvage de la Nouvelle Zéelande, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Toubau, fils du Roi des îles des Amis, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Toubau, fils du Roi des îles des Amis, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Vouacécé, habitant de Fidgi, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Vouacécé, habitant de Fidgi, 2018 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Femme de la Nouvelle Calédonie, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Femme de la Nouvelle Calédonie, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Jeune Sauvage de la Nouvelle Zéelande, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Exchange: Jeune Sauvage de la Nouvelle Zéelande, 2014 by Nicola Dickson
Nyawurru (emu), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nyawurru (emu), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Baggabal (echidna), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Baggabal (echidna), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
This one, when I was growing up with my grandmother, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
This one, when I was growing up with my grandmother, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nangala (the brolga), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nangala (the brolga), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Ngarre (sugarbag), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Ngarre (sugarbag), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nangala (the turtle), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nangala (the turtle), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nangari (crow), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nangari (crow), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Darriyaril (rainbow), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Darriyaril (rainbow), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Me, Mary and Eileen, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Me, Mary and Eileen, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Two cheeky girls, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Two cheeky girls, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
When I was a little Girl with all my mates, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
When I was a little Girl with all my mates, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Teaching me when I was growing up, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Teaching me when I was growing up, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Yarralalil (bush woman), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Yarralalil (bush woman), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Moolloonggoogallem (wishing for fat one from the moon), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Moolloonggoogallem (wishing for fat one from the moon), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Poison Tree for Fish, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Poison Tree for Fish, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Goonjal (bush yam tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Goonjal (bush yam tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Barregll (nutwood tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Barregll (nutwood tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nyajarri (bush turkey), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nyajarri (bush turkey), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Gelbayn Hill (Mabel Downs), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Gelbayn Hill (Mabel Downs), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Mabel Downs Station, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Mabel Downs Station, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Winbul (pandanus tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Winbul (pandanus tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Goollabal (Rainbow Serpent), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Goollabal (Rainbow Serpent), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Dayiwool Ngarranggarni (Arygle dreaming), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Dayiwool Ngarranggarni (Arygle dreaming), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Jilloorlban Spring, Mabel Downs, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Jilloorlban Spring, Mabel Downs, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
(the moon climbs up the Leichardt tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
(the moon climbs up the Leichardt tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Jugurrul (bush orange tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Jugurrul (bush orange tree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Skin group from my mother’s side, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Skin group from my mother’s side, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nambin (black headed python), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Nambin (black headed python), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Ngalingalim berrem (Women’s one’s), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Ngalingalim berrem (Women’s one’s), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Gooral Gooral (stormbird and Willy wagtail), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Gooral Gooral (stormbird and Willy wagtail), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Skin group from my father’s mother’s side, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Skin group from my father’s mother’s side, 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Marlowal Nagarra (rock wallaby skin), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Marlowal Nagarra (rock wallaby skin), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Marlowal Dreaming (Female rock wallaby Dreaming)), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Marlowal Dreaming (Female rock wallaby Dreaming)), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Gelbayen (Mabel Downs), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Gelbayen (Mabel Downs), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Moonga Moonga (women’s corroboree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Moonga Moonga (women’s corroboree), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Thilin-Thilin Gooragall Nyajaringil Garnkiny-nu (white gum tree, mother for the moon), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
Thilin-Thilin Gooragall Nyajaringil Garnkiny-nu (white gum tree, mother for the moon), 2018 by Shirley Purdie
The Traveller, 2018 by Valerie Kirk
The Traveller, 2018 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxing, 1999 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxing, 1999 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Croxxes, 1999‑2000 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
Ayrshire Slates, 2017 by Valerie Kirk
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Girl 2), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Girl 2), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Boy 3), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Boy 3), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Boy 1), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Boy 1), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Girl 1), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Girl 1), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Boy 2), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
The Scheme (5 works on calico - Boy 2), 2018 by Fiona McMonagle
Refined Portraits of Desire (detail), 2018 by Nusra Latif Qureshi
Refined Portraits of Desire (detail), 2018 by Nusra Latif Qureshi
Refined Portraits of Desire (detail), 2018 by Nusra Latif Qureshi
Refined Portraits of Desire (detail), 2018 by Nusra Latif Qureshi
Reading, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Reading, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Studio, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Studio, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Baby, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Baby, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Couple, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Couple, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Beach, 2018 by Leah King-Smith
Beach, 2018 by Leah King-Smith

Related information

Ngalim-Ngalimbooroo Ngagenybe, 2018 Shirley Purdie
Ngalim-Ngalimbooroo Ngagenybe, 2018 Shirley Purdie
Ngalim-Ngalimbooroo Ngagenybe, 2018 Shirley Purdie
Ngalim-Ngalimbooroo Ngagenybe, 2018 Shirley Purdie

Storied portrait

About Face article

27 May 2020

Emily Casey takes in Shirley Purdie’s remarkable self-portrait, Ngalim-Ngalimbooroo Ngagenybe.

The Rajah quilt, 1841 by Kezia Hayter
The Rajah quilt, 1841 by Kezia Hayter
The Rajah quilt, 1841 by Kezia Hayter
The Rajah quilt, 1841 by Kezia Hayter

Material culture

Magazine article by Joanna Gilmour, 2018

The Rajah Quilt’s narrative promptings are as intriguing as the textile is intricate.

Self portrait, 1957 by Sunarto P. R.
Self portrait, 1957 by Sunarto P. R.
Self portrait, 1957 by Sunarto P. R.
Self portrait, 1957 by Sunarto P. R.

Masters of modern Indonesian portraiture

Previous exhibition, 2014

Masters of modern Indonesian portraiture presents key modernist paintings and drawings along with a selection of contemporary works.

© National Portrait Gallery 2021
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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 both past and present.

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

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency