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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.

Norman Lindsay

1936
Max Dupain OBE

gelatin silver photograph on paper (sheet: 40.4 cm x 31.3 cm, image: 40.1 cm x 30.5 cm)

Norman Lindsay (1879–1969), artist, cartoonist, and writer, came from a family that produced five artists: Percy, Lionel, Ruby and Daryl Lindsay were the others. Norman Lindsay left home when he was sixteen to live with Lionel in rented rooms in Melbourne. There, he drew illustrations and cartoons for the sensational rag the Hawklet and was a member of the bohemian artists’ club self-styled the Prehistoric Order of Cannibals. He spent the summer of 1897–98 living in the artists’ colony of Charterisville, making drawings jointly inspired by the Decameron and the neglected gardens around his cottage. In 1901 he moved north to make his permanent home in the Blue Mountains, where he worked for the Bulletin in an association that lasted almost to his death. Meanwhile, his first novel was published in 1913, and by the 1920s he was both proficient and prolific in pen and ink drawing, etching, woodcuts, painting and sculpture. A disciple of Nietzsche from early on, Lindsay loathed Christianity, and his art depicts Bohemianism and Arcadian pantheism admixed in a fantasy world. As early as 1904 his work was deemed blasphemous; in 1930 his novel Redheap was banned and the following year the police proceeded against an issue of Art in Australia that showcased his pictures. Seething with lush nudes, his paintings and prints remain popular with collectors, and his cheerfully violent The Magic Pudding (1918) is still regarded as an Australian children’s classic.

Max Dupain opened his own photographic studio in Sydney in 1934, and the following year his work was published for the first time in The Home. The photograph of Norman Lindsay – whom Dupain frankly admired – is from the first flurry of glamorous shots he took over the course of the 1930s.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Purchased with funds provided by Timothy Fairfax AC 2003

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

Max Dupain OBE (age 25 in 1936)

Norman Lindsay (age 57 in 1936)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

Supported by

Tim Fairfax AC (53 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.

Sydney Ure Smith
Sydney Ure Smith
Sydney Ure Smith
Sydney Ure Smith

Dupain detective

Magazine article by Johanna McMahon, 2019

Johanna McMahon revels in history and mystery in pursuit of a suite of unknown portrait subjects.

Colin Madigan and Robert Hughes, Canberra
Colin Madigan and Robert Hughes, Canberra
Colin Madigan and Robert Hughes, Canberra
Colin Madigan and Robert Hughes, Canberra

Three Dimensional

Magazine article by Kate Gollings, 2004

Kate Gollings describes an encounter between three generations of Australian photographers; David Moore, Max Dupain and John Gollings.

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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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