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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 Gallery’s Acknowledgement of Country, and information on culturally sensitive and restricted content and the use of historic language in the collection can be found here.

Patrick White, Castle Hill, Sydney

1963 (printed 2000)
David Moore

from the series ‘From Face to Face’
gelatin silver photograph on paper (28.2 cm x 43.0 cm)

Patrick White (1912-1990), novelist and playwright, is the only Australian author to have won the Nobel Prize for Literature (in 1973). White was born in London to a family of Hunter River graziers and spent his youth between England and Australia, at one point returning from study abroad to work as a jackeroo. Having served in North Africa during World War 2, he returned to Australia to live first in rural Castle Hill, north of Sydney, and later in Centennial Park, Sydney. White's novels include The Aunt's Story, The Tree of Man, Voss, Riders in the Chariot, The Vivisector, The Eye of the Storm, and The Twyborn Affair. Piqued by criticism of Voss he wrote in 1958 'How sick I am of the bloody word AUSTRALIA. What a pity I am part of it; if I were not, I would get out tomorrow. As it is, they will have me with them till my bitter end, and there are about six more of my un-Australian novels to fling in their faces.' He was 'horrified' to be told he had been chosen as Australian of the Year for 1973, but during the Whitlam era he became political, 'first from exhilaration, then through a sense of outrage', and made star appearances at various protest rallies.

Australian of the Year 1973

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
The series 'David Moore: From Face to Face' was acquired as a gift of the artist and with financial assistance from Timothy Fairfax AC and L Gordon Darling AC CMG 2001
© Lisa, Michael, Matthew and Joshua Moore
http://davidmoorephotography.com.au/

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

David Moore (age 36 in 1963)

Patrick White (age 51 in 1963)

Supported by

Tim Fairfax AC (53 portraits supported)

The Gordon Darling Foundation (36 portraits supported)

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.

Patrick White at Centennial Park, 1979–1980
Patrick White at Centennial Park, 1979–1980
Patrick White at Centennial Park, 1979–1980
Patrick White at Centennial Park, 1979–1980

Listomania

Magazine article by Dr Sarah Engledow, 2013

Sarah Engledow describes the fall-out once Brett Whiteley stuck Patrick White’s list of his loves and hates onto his great portrait of the writer.

Patrick White by William Yang

Portrait story

An interview with photographer William Yang who recalls his encounters with the author Patrick White.

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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.

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