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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.

Portrait of Margaret Olley in her Paddington studio

by John McRae

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2012 People's Choice Award

People's Choice, National Photographic Portrait Prize 2012

I had the great pleasure of photographing Margaret in her Paddington studio, a place well known for its colourful clutter and referred to by some friends as 'The Dolls House'. In my portrait, Margaret is seated in her painting chair, confronting the lens with her particular sense of candour and an uncommon frailty. As far as I know, this may well be the last photo taken of her before her death the following month. Christine France - art critic, author of Margaret Olley (1990), commented, "It is a wonderful photo in that it captures both the vulnerability and sense of enquiry which entered her face in the last months of her life".

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2012

Other NPPP photos from John McRae

Gender not specified, 2010 by John McRae
NPPP 2011 Finalist
Portrait of a young Aussie, Matuse Peace, 2016 by John McRae
NPPP 2017 Finalist
Glitter and colour on the streets of Erskineville, 2015 by John McRae
NPPP 2016 Finalist

Related information

Jack Charles, 2011 Rod McNicol
Jack Charles, 2011 Rod McNicol
Jack Charles, 2011 Rod McNicol
Jack Charles, 2011 Rod McNicol

National Photographic Portrait Prize 2012

Previous exhibition, 2012

The National Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition is selected from a national field of entries that reflect the distinctive vision of Australia's aspiring and professional portrait photographers and the unique nature of their subjects.

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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.