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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.

Ron Castan AM QC, 1995

Kate Gollings

gelatin silver photograph, selenium toned on paper (sheet: 60.5 cm x 50.3 cm, image: 50.5 cm x 37.7 cm)

Ron Castan AM QC (1939–1999), barrister, played a leading role in some of the most significant Australian litigation involving the rights of Indigenous people. Founding secretary of the Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service, Castan became senior counsel in the Mabo case in 1982, and worked for a decade to shape the High Court decision delivered in 1992. In 1983 he also provided legal advice to applicants in the Tasmanian Dams case. Later, he helped to draft the Wik case, and supported Indigenous people’s objections to amendments to the Native Title Act in 1998. Castan’s parents were Russian Jewish immigrants, and he was also a Jewish community leader, with interests reaching beyond the law to commerce, politics, the arts and philanthropy. Castan died suddenly after surgery, just short of his sixtieth birthday. Paying tribute to his wide and constant efforts to redress injustice, Indigenous politician Aden Ridgeway called Castan the ‘white warrior against racism’. Monash University’s Castan Centre for Human Rights Law is named in his honour.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Marilyn Darling AC 2001
© Estate of Kate Gollings

Accession number: 2001.34

Currently not on display

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Artist and subject

Kate Gollings (age 52 in 1995)

Ron Castan AM QC (age 56 in 1995)

Subject professions

Activism

Law and justice

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.

Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti & Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti & Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti & Campbell
Andy Thomas, 2002 Montalbetti & Campbell

Uncommon Australians

The vision of Gordon and Marilyn Darling

Previous exhibition, 2015

This exhibition showcases portraits acquired through the generosity of the National Portrait Gallery’s Founding Patrons, L Gordon Darling AC CMG and Marilyn Darling AC.

The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery
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 both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.