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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.

Sir Joseph Banks, 1810

Sir Thomas Lawrence, William Evans and Anthony Cardon (engraver)

engraving on paper (sheet: 42.5 cm x 32.5 cm, image: 38.0 cm x 30.0 cm)

Joseph Banks KCB (1743-1820), naturalist, was only 25 when he suggested to the council of the Royal Society that they recommend him for inclusion on the voyage of the Endeavour. With Daniel Solander, he collected hundreds of specimens of plants and animals of the South Seas, of which many are depicted in the volumes which have come to be known as Banks' Florilegium. Banks later became President of the Royal Society. His association with Australia continued after the voyage with Cook: he advised on the establishment of the first penal settlement; he was a patron of Matthew Flinders and others; and his keen interest in Australian natural history was sustained through correspondence with all the early governors of New South Wales.

Sir Thomas Lawrence RA, the leading European portrait painter of his generation, was much admired for his splendid representations of the elegance of the aristocracy.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with the assistance of the Australian Decorative and Fine Arts Society Canberra 2000

Accession number: 2000.31

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Sir Thomas Lawrence (age 41 in 1810)

William Evans

Anthony Cardon (age 38 in 1810)

Sir Joseph Banks KCB (age 67 in 1810)

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.

Sir Joseph Banks, c. 1788 Benjamin West, John Raphael Smith
Sir Joseph Banks, c. 1788 Benjamin West, John Raphael Smith
Sir Joseph Banks, c. 1788 Benjamin West, John Raphael Smith
Sir Joseph Banks, c. 1788 Benjamin West, John Raphael Smith

In a good paddock

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2011

Celebrating a new painted portrait of Joseph Banks, Sarah Engledow spins a yarn of the naturalist, the first kangaroo in France and Don, a Spanish ram.

Caroline Amelia Elizabeth
of Brunswick, 1804
Caroline Amelia Elizabeth
of Brunswick, 1804
Caroline Amelia Elizabeth
of Brunswick, 1804
Caroline Amelia Elizabeth
of Brunswick, 1804

Around the grounds

Magazine article by Dr Anne Sanders, 2010

Anne Sanders writes about the exhibitions Victoria & Albert: Art & Love on display at the Queen's Gallery, Buckingham Palace and the retrospective of Sir Thomas Lawrence at the National Portrait Gallery, London.

Portrait of Dr Johann Reinhold Forster and his son George Forster, c. 1780 Jean Francois Rigaud
Portrait of Dr Johann Reinhold Forster and his son George Forster, c. 1780 Jean Francois Rigaud
Portrait of Dr Johann Reinhold Forster and his son George Forster, c. 1780 Jean Francois Rigaud
Portrait of Dr Johann Reinhold Forster and his son George Forster, c. 1780 Jean Francois Rigaud

To the end of the earth

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2009

The portrait of Dr. Johann Reinhold Forster and his son George Forster from 1780, is one of the oldest in the NPG's collection.

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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.