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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.

Awesome Achievers

Stories from Australians of the Year

Celebrate and be inspired by talent, passion and achievement – and triumph over adversity. This exhibition features major portraits drawn from the National Portrait Gallery collection and supplemented with works from private and institutional sources.

More information on Awesome Achievers

Selected images

Lowitja O'Donoghue, 2006 Robert Hannaford
Lowitja O'Donoghue, 2006 Robert Hannaford
Untitled (preparatory study for sculpture of Dr John Yu), 2003 Ah Xian
Untitled (preparatory study for sculpture of Dr John Yu), 2003 Ah Xian
Adam (Adam Goodes), 2014 Alan Jones
Adam (Adam Goodes), 2014 Alan Jones
Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill, 2005 Ian Jennings
Lee Kernaghan near Broken Hill, 2005 Ian Jennings
Pat McGorry, 2009 (printed 2010) Dave Tacon
Pat McGorry, 2009 (printed 2010) Dave Tacon
John Farnham, 1996 Polly Borland
John Farnham, 1996 Polly Borland
Alan Bond Joe Greenberg
Alan Bond Joe Greenberg
Alexander 'Jock' Sturrock, 1962 Graham Thorley
Alexander 'Jock' Sturrock, 1962 Graham Thorley
Senator Bonner, 1990 Robert Campbell Jnr
Senator Bonner, 1990 Robert Campbell Jnr
Sir Macfarlane Burnet, 1960-61 William Dargie
Sir Macfarlane Burnet, 1960-61 William Dargie
Dawn Fraser, 1998 (printed 2001) Peter Brew-Bevan
Dawn Fraser, 1998 (printed 2001) Peter Brew-Bevan
Dawn Fraser, 1963 David Moore
Dawn Fraser, 1963 David Moore
Cathy Freeman, 1994 Montalbetti+Campbell
Cathy Freeman, 1994 Montalbetti+Campbell
Cathy Freeman, 1994 (printed 2010) Bill McAuley
Cathy Freeman, 1994 (printed 2010) Bill McAuley
Mandawuy Yunupingu, 1991 (printed 2011) Lorrie Graham
Mandawuy Yunupingu, 1991 (printed 2011) Lorrie Graham
Mandawuy Yunupingu, NT, 2004 John Elliott
Mandawuy Yunupingu, NT, 2004 John Elliott
Discussion between Bob Hawke and Galarrwuy Yunupingu, Burunga Festival, Northern Territory, 1988 (printed 2015) Sue Ford
Discussion between Bob Hawke and Galarrwuy Yunupingu, Burunga Festival, Northern Territory, 1988 (printed 2015) Sue Ford
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NC
Lionel Rose, World Champion Bantam Weight Boxer before departing to the USA to defend his title, 1968 (printed 2008) Mervyn Bishop
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NC
Kath Walker (Oodgeroo Noonuccal) and Lois O'Donoghue (Lowitja O'Donoghue) at the opening of the inaugural National Aboriginal Conference, Canberra, 1978 (printed 2014) Mervyn Bishop
Robert Helpmann, 1969 David Moore
Robert Helpmann, 1969 David Moore
Sidney Nolan and Robert Helpmann at Bonython Gallery, Adelaide Arts Festival, c.1964 (printed 2015) Robert McFarlane
Sidney Nolan and Robert Helpmann at Bonython Gallery, Adelaide Arts Festival, c.1964 (printed 2015) Robert McFarlane
Joan Sutherland, (printed 1992) Lewis Morley
Joan Sutherland, (printed 1992) Lewis Morley
Dame Joan Sutherland, c. 1977 Robert Hannaford
Dame Joan Sutherland, c. 1977 Robert Hannaford
Ian Kiernan, 1996 Kate Gollings
Ian Kiernan, 1996 Kate Gollings
The Seekers reunite 50 years on, 2011 Helen Edwards
The Seekers reunite 50 years on, 2011 Helen Edwards
Graham Kennedy and the Seekers in Melbourne, c.1967 Robert Whitaker
Graham Kennedy and the Seekers in Melbourne, c.1967 Robert Whitaker
Patrick White, 1980 William Yang
Patrick White, 1980 William Yang

Related information

Lowitja O'Donoghue, 2006 Robert Hannaford
Lowitja O'Donoghue, 2006 Robert Hannaford
Lowitja O'Donoghue, 2006 Robert Hannaford
Lowitja O'Donoghue, 2006 Robert Hannaford

Awesome Achievers

A cross-curriculum learning resource for upper primary school students

Learning resources

What makes someone awesome? And how does a portrait tell a person's story? Bring your students up close and personal with some great Australians. 

Lowitja O'Donoghue by Robert Hannaford video: 4 minutes and 5 seconds
Lowitja O'Donoghue by Robert Hannaford video: 4 minutes and 5 seconds
Lowitja O'Donoghue by Robert Hannaford video: 4 minutes and 5 seconds
Lowitja O'Donoghue by Robert Hannaford video: 4 minutes and 5 seconds

Lowitja O'Donoghue and Robert Hannaford

'I'm going to wear everything red, black, and yellow'

Portrait story

Lowitja O'Donoghue discusses her life and portrait by Robert Hannaford.

Tim Flannery by Robert Hannaford video: 3 minutes and 21 seconds
Tim Flannery by Robert Hannaford video: 3 minutes and 21 seconds
Tim Flannery by Robert Hannaford video: 3 minutes and 21 seconds
Tim Flannery by Robert Hannaford video: 3 minutes and 21 seconds

Tim Flannery by Robert Hannaford

'The space around'

Portrait story

Tim Flannery and artist Robert Hannaford discuss the creation of Tim's portrait.

Shane Gould video: 3 minutes 48 seconds
Shane Gould video: 3 minutes 48 seconds
Shane Gould video: 3 minutes 48 seconds
Shane Gould video: 3 minutes 48 seconds

Shane Gould

'Swimming is in my bones'

Portrait story

Shane Gould, Australian champion and Olympic gold medallist talks about her passion for swimming.

We would like to thank our partners.
© National Portrait Gallery 2020
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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.