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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.

Slim Dusty and Dame Edna Everage, Carlton Hill Station, WA, 10 July 1993

John Elliott

gelatin silver photograph on paper (sheet: 50.5 cm x 40.5 cm, image: 49.5 cm x 39.0 cm)

Slim Dusty AO MBE (1927-2003) was Australia's most prolific recording artist, his travelling show an Australian tradition. He wrote his first song, 'The Way the Cowboy Dies', when he was ten years old, and styled himself 'Slim Dusty' at eleven. His song 'The Pub With no Beer' (1957) was the first international hit by an Australian recording artist, and was awarded Australia's first gold record. It remains the only 78rpm gold record in Australia. Dusty held more gold and platinum records than any other Australian artist, and won 32 Tamworth Country Music Festival Golden Guitars. In 1999 he was named Father of the Year and inaugural Senior Australian of the Year. His 100th album was released in July 2000. John Elliott photographed Dusty for decades. In 1993, he captured the singer with superstar Dame Edna Everage (Barry Humphries) on a West Australian cattle station.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased 1999
© John Elliott

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

John Elliott (age 42 in 1993)

Slim Dusty OBE (age 71 in 1993)

Barry Humphries (age 59 in 1993)

Subject professions

Performing arts

Related information

The Companion

Permanent collection catalogue

Café and shop

On one level The Companion talks about the most famous and frontline Australians, but on another it tells us about ourselves: who we read, who we watch, who we listen to, who we cheer for, who we aspire to be, and who we'll never forget. The Companion is available to buy online and in the Portrait Gallery Store.

Herb Wharton, Cunnamulla, Qld
Herb Wharton, Cunnamulla, Qld
Herb Wharton, Cunnamulla, Qld
Herb Wharton, Cunnamulla, Qld

Thousand mile stare

Magazine article by Simon Elliott, 2004

John Elliott talks about his photographic portrait practice, including his iconic image of Slim Dusty arm-in-arm with Dame Edna Everage.

Barry Humphries
Barry Humphries
Barry Humphries
Barry Humphries

No Laughing Matter

Magazine article by Simon Elliott, 2002

The biographical exhibition of Barry Humphries was the first display of its kind at the National Portrait Gallery.

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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 past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency