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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.

John Firth-Smith

1974
Lewis Morley

gelatin silver photograph on paper (sheet: 30.5 cm x 40.2 cm, image: 27.8 cm x 36.7 cm)

John Firth-Smith (b. 1943) is a Sydney abstract painter. In the early 1960s he won a number of 'young artist' prizes for his paintings of yachts on Sydney Harbour, but by 1968 his work was becoming increasingly abstract, featuring large fields of opaque colour. Through the sixties, seventies and eighties he taught at various schools and institutions while exhibiting regularly and winning awards every two or three years. In 1974 he was the subject of a twenty-minute documentary on the ABC's Target programme, and his works were soon acquired by a number of corporate collections. In 1981 he completed the enormous commissioned project of 32 panels for the reception area of the ANZ Bank in Collins Place, Melbourne. Firth-Smith has travelled very widely and has lived and worked overseas for several periods. Still a successful artist, Firth-Smith is represented in most major Australian public galleries. This photograph was taken at his studio in Sydney during the years he was exhibiting at Gallery A.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Gift of the artist 2003
Donated through the Australian Government's Cultural Gifts Program
© Lewis Morley Archive LLC

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

Lewis Morley (age 49 in 1974)

John Firth Smith (age 31 in 1974)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

Donated by

Lewis Morley (49 portraits)

Related information

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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.

Lewis Morley
Lewis Morley
Lewis Morley
Lewis Morley

Myself and Eye

Magazine article by Magda Keaney, 2003

Magda Keaney speaks with Lewis Morley about his photographic career and the major retrospective of his work on display at the NPG.

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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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