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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.

Russell Drysdale and Peter Sculthorpe, Tallow Beach, New South Wales

1969 (printed 2000)
David Moore

from the series ‘From Face to Face’
gelatin silver photograph on paper (42.5 cm x 28.5 cm)

Over the 1940s and 50s Russell Drysdale AC (1912-1981) produced a series of stark, foreboding paintings of the landscapes, towns and people of outback and rural Australia, amongst which are many of the best-known images in Australian art. In 1963 he and his friend, composer Peter Sculthorpe AO OBE (1929-2014), took a working holiday in Tasmania. Out of this trip emerged Sculthorpe’s best-known piece, ‘Small Town’, inspired in part by Drysdale’s paintings of towns and dedicated to the painter. In 2014, after the composer’s death, an American writer for the New Yorker described visiting Victoria for the first time, and finding that Sculthorpe’s pizzicato and percussive effects ‘perfectly evoked the landscape . . . its vernacular architecture, beautiful stands of eucalyptus, red hills, dry grass, and sudden screaming flocks of lorikeets’. The composer once said that like the painter, he had come to look on his ‘whole output as one slowly emerging work’. At Tallow Beach on the central coast of NSW, close to Drysdale’s property at Bouddi, David Moore photographed two men who profoundly influenced Australians’ way of imagining their own place, creating, as he did so, one of the great Australian portraits-in-the-landscape.

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 42 in 1969)

Russell Drysdale (age 57 in 1969)

Peter Sculthorpe AO OBE (age 40 in 1969)

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.

Peter Sculthorpe

'Brings in the sun'

Portrait story

Legendary Australian composer, Peter Sculthorpe, describes the development of his career.

Clifton Pugh painting in the studio
Clifton Pugh painting in the studio
Clifton Pugh painting in the studio
Clifton Pugh painting in the studio

Painting mates

Magazine article by Michael Desmond, 2011

Michael Desmond discusses Fred Williams' portraits of friends, artist Clifton Pugh, David Aspden and writer Stephen Murray-Smith, and the stylistic connections between his portraits and landscapes.

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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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